July 13th, 2010
03:36 PM ET

Earthquake followed by heartbreak for Haitian family

Ivan Watson

[cnn-photo-caption image=http://i.cdn.turner.com/cnn/2010/WORLD/americas/07/13/haiti.struggling.survivors/t1larg.clervils.jpg caption="Michel and Eliane Clervil survey a camp shortly after the January 12 earthquake in Haiti. Soon more tragedy would strike" width=300 height=169]

Six months ago, Michel Clervil and his wife, Eliane, looked lost in a sea of makeshift tents. Eliane nervously clutched a small hand-cranked radio distributed by the U.S. Army, while Michel periodically wiped at the sweat on his brow with a rag.

The couple had just taken shelter with their children in the filthy camp that sprang up on a golf course in Port-au-Prince. They were disoriented and almost appeared to be in shock.

In fact, the Clervils were lucky to be alive.

Somehow, everyone in the family escaped unharmed when the walls of their five-story house came tumbling down on January 12. At least 220,000 people were killed in the earthquake. Many more were injured.

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Filed under: Haiti Earthquake • Ivan Watson
soundoff (7 Responses)
  1. AuntieDonna

    What can we the public do to help?
    Do we need to call Congress and ask them to fullfill our commitment, while we are demanding they extend the "Unemployment Benefits?"

    Do you think this will help?

    July 14, 2010 at 2:16 pm |
  2. Jeannie Nothe

    From Wyoming
    We donated and i am more than concerned about the corruption of the Haitian Government. Why hasn't Obama stepped in. Mr. Clinton doesn't count.

    July 13, 2010 at 10:22 pm |
  3. Richmond Cass

    I enjoy watching your coverage of the events taking place in Haiti. Those people have suffered so much. Now the reconstruction seems to be stuck with no clear vision for long term relief.
    I have two comments about the rebuilding efforts and maybe why little is being done. First, Port -au- Prince sits on a very dangerous fault, so clearing the rubble might encourage people to move back to a place where more tremors will be bring more tragedy. Secondly, over 200,000 people died in this area and the victims' relatives might view this area as no less sacred as the victims' relatives of 9/11 view the site where the World Trade Towers stood.

    July 13, 2010 at 7:13 pm |
  4. Paulette Bent

    Hi Anderson! Thank you for returning to Haiti. I will not donate to any future disasters simply because the money I gave for the Haitian people is not getting to them. The people who are holding this distribution process of the funds up could very well be the next disaster victims – and there will be NOTHING for them. A true disgrace.

    July 13, 2010 at 6:50 pm |
  5. Kula Msy R Ellison.

    Hi Mr A Copper. It good you were back for follow up at Haiti. The people are very strong &
    the divine is keeping then alive & you. Since the
    governent of Haiti is not doing their job.
    Sincerely, Kula May R Ellison

    July 13, 2010 at 5:16 pm |
  6. Carol B.

    Hi Ivan, Your sincerity and compassion for the citizens of Haiti comes through in your blogs. Hopefully, this heartbroken man, like so many others there will find a way to go on. Although there are people who care and want to rebuild homes and infrastructure, there is too much red tape and organizations not willing to work together. HOW is this helping the Haitians when medical and food supplies are being stockpiled and not distributed? Even so, none of this will replace the loss of loved ones. No one can have a fighting chance for a new beginning when they have no home or future to even visualize.

    July 13, 2010 at 4:20 pm |
  7. Paola Alcius

    Can A.C. ask Preval why are they holding goods and medicines in warehouses because of tax purposes, whose suppose to pay the taxes on those goods and who the money would beneficiate? how can you sit and watch all these children dying because of a simple antibiotics? I'll be watching tonight. Thanks A. C.

    July 13, 2010 at 3:52 pm |

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