It’s been a week since Hurricane Irma first hit the Caribbean. At least 37 people were killed there by the storm. The island of St. John, one of the U.S. Virgin Islands, was decimated and could be home to Irma’s worst destruction on American soil.
Tommy Young moved from Boston and made Coral Bay, St. John his home in 2007.
“We’re on the other side of the island. We’re totally devastated,” Young told CBS News’ Dokoupil. “We’ve lost homes, we’ve lost roofs. We’ve lost vehicles.”
Irma hit the Virgin Islands as a Category 5 hurricane with 150 mph winds. The storm changed the 20-square mile landscape of St. John. The winds stripped the foliage off trees, making the hillside look like it was charred.
As we sailed into Cruz Bay, the island’s largest town, we saw even the U.S. customs office was a total loss.
An area that would typically be bustling with tourists was a ghost town. Everything is still, with the exception of construction, aid workers and recently members of the U.S. Navy who are there now to restore order.
Five thousand people live in St. John, an island in American hands for 100 years.
Young said he is grateful even if his next steps are unclear.
“There are people like myself who have lost everything,” Young said. “The clothes on my back are from others.”
“What’s it gonna take for you to get back on your feet? For this island to get back on its feet?” Dokoupil asked.
“Lots of prayers. You know, just some time. Lots of healing,” Young said.
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