The Triton

News

Former stew/deck rallies resources for St. Thomas in USVI

ADVERTISEMENT

By Dorie Cox

Former deck/stew Jody Olson is connecting with everyone she knows to help her home island of St. Thomas in the U.S. Virgin Islands after the devastation caused by Hurricane Irma. Formerly on yachts including M/Y D’Natalin IV, M/Y Arioso, and M/Y Harle, Olson currently works as a house manager on the island.

“On the news you see talk of long gas lines in Florida, not how people have lost their homes in the islands,” Olson said by phone today. “And lots of people don’t know another storm, Hurricane Jose, is coming.”

Temporarily in New York City, she evacuated before the storm with the family she works with, and is now on the phone and online coordinating fundraising and relief efforts.

She hopes to bring supplies and donations to the island in the future because many regular delivery channels are damaged.

“A lot of the ferries are damaged or sunk and there is no post office on St. Thomas anymore,” she said.

Olson has created a t-shirt for sale online and said that 100 percent of the money will go to the Community Foundation of the Virgin Islands. People want to help, but many are not sure how and many of the standard resources on island are having their own troubles, she said.

“Patients had to be evacuated from the hospital and the roof collapsed on the fire station. It injured several workers and has blocked the vehicles,” she said. “The gas stations are damaged. Yacht Haven Grande has fuel but the dispensers are broken.”

Olson grew up on St. Thomas, knows the region well, and sees several immediate needs.

Former deckhand Jody Olson is pictured on M/Y Harle during this year’s Mediterranean season. She is currently organizing relief efforts for her home island of St. Thomas in the USVI. PHOTO PROVIDED

“I’m working to find people with large vehicles to help,” she said. “Our challenges are finding enough people to help, getting curfew passes and getting roads clear. Finding fuel is a problem and so is security. Many people want to help but are wary because of how dangerous it can be, there are reports of looting.”

Olson sounds energetic in her mission, but realistic on how difficult it will be to be sure people are safe, to get communication back online and to get supplies to the island.

“I feel the tone of the island changing, first, they were happy to be alive and most are accounted for. But now they see total devastation. People are losing hope quickly,” she said. “We are very hopeful. They need to hold on a little longer.”

Dorie Cox is editor of The Triton. Comment below.

Related Posts...
Dometic has recently signed a contract with Sunseeker to be Read more...
Newport Shipyard’s annual Pumpkin Regatta raised over $3,600 for three Read more...
Co-founder of Microsoft and large yacht owner Paul Allen died Read more...
A storm surge washed S/Y Sila Sibiri on shore in Read more...
The Yacht Group plans to open a new showroom at Read more...

Share This Post

About Dorie Cox

Dorie Cox is editor of The Triton.

View all posts by Dorie Cox →

Leave a comment

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

Please answer the question below to leave a comment. * Time limit is exhausted. Please reload CAPTCHA.

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.

Editor’s Picks

Secure at Sea: Yachts tempt thieves, especially in South Florida

Secure at Sea: Yachts tempt thieves, especially in South Florida

Secure@Sea: by Corey Ranslem “I can’t believe that happened!” That’s usually the response you get when you hear about the …

Multi-yacht owner Paul Allen dies

Multi-yacht owner Paul Allen dies

Co-founder of Microsoft and large yacht owner Paul Allen died yesterday from complications of non-Hodgkin's lymphoma. He was well-known …

New plans emerge for old Summerfield yard

New plans emerge for old Summerfield yard

By Dorie Cox The Hix Snedeker Companies of Daphne, Alabama, is scheduled to meet with Fort Lauderdale city officials in November to …

Yacht industry gathers for Triton Expo

Yacht industry gathers for Triton Expo

More than 800 captains, crew and industry professionals attended the Triton Expo in October at ISSGMT in Fort Lauderdale. Fifty businesses …