St. Croix in the U.S. Virgin Islands sustained major damage from Hurricane Maria, which pummeled the island with Category 5 strength on Tuesday night.
U.S. Virgin Islands Governor Kenneth Mapp released a statement after the storm, vowing to rebuild St. Croix, and St. Thomas and St. John, which were badly hit by Hurricane Irma on September 6.
“The past 24 hours have been difficult and exhausting for the people of the U.S. Virgin Islands, especially our friends, family, neighbors and communities on St. Croix,” Mapp said. “After touring damaged neighborhoods across St. Croix, my prayer is for renewed strength and resolve to rebuild all of our islands in the wake of these two terrible storms. Your Government will neither rest nor grow weary as we continue to work with our federal partners and our friends across the mainland and around the world, to clean up and reconstruct the beautiful U.S. Virgin Islands. Always remember, we are strong and we are resilient.”
Hurricane Maria is currently a Category 3 storm with maximum sustained winds of 115 miles per hour, according to the National Hurricane Center. It is heading for the Turks & Caicos islands.
These photos show the impact of Hurricane Maria on St. Croix:
Retired NBA star Tim Duncan, who is from St. Croix, has set up a relief fund to raise money for victims of the hurricane and to help rebuild the islands. So far, he has raised more than $2.5 million.
To help with the recovery and reconstruction in the U.S. Virgin Islands, you can also visit www.usvirecovery.org.