Saratoga Springs mayor Mia Love waiting to hear from Haitian relatives

Published: Friday, Jan. 15 2010 12:00 a.m. MST

Mia Love (Tom Smart, Deseret News) Mia Love (Tom Smart, Deseret News)

SARATOGA SPRINGS — The news is scant when it comes from a friend of a friend.

But it's scary just the same when you hear your uncle's three-story home near Port-au-Prince has been leveled.

Not just your uncle's home, but every home in the neighborhood.

New Saratoga Springs Mayor Mia Love says she had just talked to her uncle Saturday. He had called from Haiti to congratulate her on being sworn into office.

"I don't know where he is now," she said. "I'm not sure there's hope for survival."

Tuesday's magnitude 7.0 earthquake in Haiti wrought widespread destruction and death.

And because adequate communication is lacking between the island nation and family members living abroad, Utahns await news, good and bad.

"It's quite devastating," said Love, who was born to Haitian immigrants in 1975.

Adding to that sense are photos she has seen on Facebook of children about the same age as her own, killed in the quake and lined up naked in the street.

Love, who was recently elected as mayor, says she is close to both her mother's and father's brothers and her cousins who live in Haiti.

"It's terrible this happened to a country that's already poor-stricken," she said.

Love says she would like to go to Haiti to help in relief efforts because she speaks two dialects of the local language. And she'd like to find some answers about her relatives.

e-mail: jdougherty@desnews.com. Twitter: desnewsdavis

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