ST. PETERSBURG, Fla. (WFLA) – A St. Petersburg family that moved to Puerto Rico is back in Tampa Bay tonight, thanks to a story that aired on News Channel 8.
Katharine and Orian Tzadik, along with their two small children, were running out of supplies after Hurricane Maria hit the island.
“Hurricane Irma passed, and wasn’t so bad, but then Maria came through and it was a lot more difficult. After we realized that the power wasn’t going to come back, and the water wasn’t coming back and the gas wasn’t coming back and communications weren’t up, it became a lot more difficult to think about weathering the storm.” Orion told News Channel 8.
Family and friends lost contact with the Tzadik’s on Sunday and didn’t hear from them until a week later. Orion’s mother, Andrea and close friend, Tara Davidson, contacted 8 On Your Side Tuesday.
“We saw the story that ran on News Channel 8 about the family from St. Pete that were and stuck and trapped really in Puerto Rico,” said Mayor Kriseman.
Kriseman reached out to the CEO of Tropic Ocean Airways, who agreed to go get the family.
The Tzadiks boarded the plane Friday morning at Rafeal Hernandez Airport, just north of Rincon, where the family lives.
The family landed at Fort Lauderdale International Airport Saturday evening and a family member picked them up and drove them to St. Petersburg.
“We are floored, we’re totally pulled over by everybody’s efforts by everybody’s efforts and love and support that have come, and that we’ve seen on social media,” said Katharine. “I can’t even begin to describe the emotions that we’ve been feeling.”
Orian told News Channel 8 that “people are lining up for gas for literally half the day,” and some are even spending the night at gas stations to get only about $10 worth of gas in the morning. “People don’t know where to get fresh drinking water, people are going to the natural springs to fill up drinking water,” he added.
He continued to lay out the issues facing those impacted by the devastating storm. Watch the full interview below.
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