Portland survivors of Nepal earthquake share their experiences


Rescue workers and medical teams from at least a dozen countries are in Nepal, trying to find and treat victims from Saturday's massive 7.8 earthquake.According to a CNN report Tuesday, the death toll has risen to more than 4,600, and at least four Americans died, and hundreds remain stuck in the country.

The family of University of Oregon student Amber Brazil heard early Tuesday that Brazil and fellow traveler Alicia Scroggins is alive. Both Brazil and Scroggins were hiking when the massive earthquake hit.

On Monday, Jennifer Brazil, Amber's mother, expressed hope that her daughter was OK, but was struggling with the lack of new information.

“We all feel in our hearts like she's OK, no one's even had a bad feeling and you just kind of feel like you would know but I just want to hear something. I just want to know anything,” Jennifer told Fox 12.

In a quick phone call to her dad on a borrowed emergency phone, Amber said they were fine and hiking out of the area to make their way home.

Jennifer's is now focused on what her daughter will experience as she makes her way back through the now destroyed areas she toured before the quake.

“Now I'm just sitting there going, ‘what is she seeing now, what is she having to witness?'" Jennifer Brazil said.

Jasmine Avgerakis is another local survivor of the devastating earthquake. Born and raised in Portland, Avgerakis works for Mercy Corps, based in South Sudan.

She flew to Nepal the day before the earthquake, for a vacation.

"In order to get a little reprieve from the stress of Sudan, I came to Nepal on Friday," Avgerakis explained, though there would be no reprieve.

"I've seen a lot. The biggest thing I've seen is fear, a lot of people are afraid to go inside,” she said.

Avgerakis noted that survivors are living under tarps all over the city of Kathmandu instead.

"I see tarps on the side of the road, in parking lots, in gardens, in school yards, etc., any open space, and you see people huddled under them with as many blankets as they can find,” Avgerakis said. “That's where they feel most comfortable and safe because they're really just scared to go back inside."

To learn how you can help with the relief efforts, go to MercyCorps.org.

Copyright 2015 KPTV-KPDX Broadcasting Corporation. All rights reserved.


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