NAPLES, Fla. A Collier County Sheriff’s Office deputy volunteered his time to areas of Puerto Rico destroyed by Hurricane Maria.
Deputy Anthony Disarro accompanied his friend Rafael Hernandez to visit the island where the storm demolished everything in its path.
Hernandez’s mother still lives on the island and her roof was damaged during the storm.
“Everyone asks me like ‘is she coming to the states?’ Nope, she’s gonna stay there, she’s gonna help whoever she can, they’re gonna stick together,” Hernandez said.
Disarro and Hernandez helped fix roofs, captured photographs and drone video of the devastation during their week-long visit.
“When we heard Maria would hit the island, I knew right after that if he was gonna go, that I wanted to go,” Disarro said.
While they couldn’t help everyone in Puerto Rico, the two men believe their trip made a difference.
“We packed up eight suitcases and we took them all down and came back with one,” Disarro said.
Hernandez and Disarro hope their story reminds others the island is still in shambles. They also say a big need is water purification tablets because they travel lighter than bottled water.
“They need help … they need help,” Hernandez said.