Gov Edwards, First Lady return from Puerto Rico

Halen Doughty

Governor John Bel Edwards and First Lady Donna Edwards visited Puerto Rico on Monday, October 30, as recovery efforts are ongoing amid the destruction left by Hurricane Maria. Edwards said the U.S. territory has a long road ahead of it, but Louisiana will be a partner through the recovery process.

“Louisiana has far too much experience with disaster management, and Mother Nature has caused unimaginable harm in Puerto Rico,” said Edwards. “I am happy that Louisiana has been able to provide assistance as survivors recover, much like the assistance we’ve relied on in the aftermath of disasters.”

Maj. General Glenn Curtis, Adjutant General of the Louisiana National Guard, and Col. James Waskom, Director of the Governor’s Office of Homeland Security and Emergency Preparedness, accompanied the governor and the first lady on the trip.

In response to the devastation, 300 Louisiana guardsmen were activated to offer assistance on the ground. One hundred fifty of those remain in Puerto Rico today. Louisiana has sent 131 pieces of heavy equipment, including 18-wheelers, dump trucks, water tankers, skid steers, tractors and Humvees, to help with rebuilding efforts.

Following the storms, Louisiana launched a donation drive for Puerto Rico and collected 100 pallets of donated goods. The donations included over 125,000 packages of diapers, 269,000 packages of baby wipes, and 57,000 feminine products. LANG is coordinating the delivery of the goods.

Follow Halen on Twitter: @LikeVanHalen.