It has been nine days since Hurricane Maria brought massive damage to Puerto Rico.
Since that time, there have been several groups have gone there to help survivors bounce back.
This week, Lieutenant-colonel Jody Smith has been tracking operations after Mississippi troops head to Puerto Rico, and the virgin islands to help with hurricane recovery.The teams are providing relief to other soldiers helping the people hit the hardest.
“We are actually sitting individuals with maintenance, supplies, any kind of sustaining operations that are needed for the soldiers and ear men that are over there currently,” Ltc. Smith said.
Several soldiers in airman are already there. The national guard is sending more than 200 service members with equipment to help.
The devastation is widespread. Most places on the island still down have running water or access to necessities.
Leaders say Mississippians are used to dealing with weather setbacks, so it’s an honor to help.
“The soldiers and airmen are chomping at the bit. Like I said we are no strangers to disaster in the state of Mississippi,” Ltc. Smith said. “They know what it’s like first head they have a neighborhood affected or their friends and family, and they take it personally. I get down there they want to help them, and they want to assist wherever they can.”
The national guard has been monitoring the movement of the deployed soldier making sure they are safe on their journey.
There are also soldiers from throughout the country who are headed there to help.