Firsthand Account of Haiti Earthquake from U.S. Embassy Worker


PORT-AU-PRINCE, HAITI -- Firsthand accounts of the earthquake in Haiti have been circulating among concerned Baptists in the United States, including one from a son of former missionaries who now works at the U.S. Embassy in Port-au-Prince.

David Lindwall is the son of retired International Mission Board workers Ted and Sue Lindwall of McKinney, Texas. He serves as the deputy chief of mission with the embassy in Haiti.

"I'm fine. Thanks for your prayers," Lindwall wrote in an e-mail to his parents Jan. 12. "I'm in the Embassy coordinating our efforts. A number of our officers are injured and we haven't been able to get to them. The roads are all blocked.

"The earthquake hit while I was on the road home and a four story building collapsed right as we got beside it, each floor falling on top of the other. My driver tried to take me back to the Embassy, but the roads were blocked by debris," Lindwall wrote.

"I convinced a man on a motorcycle to take me to the Embassy. I'm fine. I'll be staying at the Embassy. Secretary Clinton called and spoke with me about a half hour ago. I gave her a report on how things are here. My house guard told me that my house is in one piece. I haven't been able to reach the staff. Thanks again for your prayers. Don't worry about me. And I'll touch base later."

Lindwall's parents had first learned he survived when they heard a CNN report quoting him. The news network reported damage to the national palace in Haiti as well as collapsed government buildings.

"Knowing that you are all right is the most important news about you," the Lindwalls wrote to their son. "We will be interested in hearing from you, but know that you have far more important things to do, especially since we know you are OK. We are getting calls and emails from quite a few folks, asking about you. We now have something we can tell them."


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