Raging wildfires in Maui have left at the least 106 individuals lifeless and 1000’s of others lacking after they had been compelled to flee their houses.
“We are heartsick that we’ve had such loss,” Hawaii governor Josh Green said during a news conference on Tuesday.
Mr Green said he expects the death toll to rise every day as recovery teams and cadaver dogs search the burned area in Lahaina on Maui. Despite the number of deaths increasing, only five people of the 106 have been identified.
Part of this reason is due to the state that many bodies were found in after the blazing wildfires moved quickly through Lahania.
A mobile morgue unit arrived to help Hawaii officials identify the remains as teams continued to search for more in neighbourhoods that were reduced to ash.
Mr Green asked people who are missing loved ones to submit their DNA to help them identify the victims.
The US Department of Health and Human Services deployed a team of coroners, pathologists and technicians along with exam tables, X-ray units and other equipment to identify victims and process remains, said Jonathan Greene, the agency’s deputy assistant secretary for response.
“It’s going to be a very, very difficult mission,” Greene said. “And patience will be incredibly important because of the number of victims.”
Maui mayor Richard Bissen offered his “deepest condolences” to the families who have received news about their loved ones.
“As a community, we offer our prayers of comfort in this most difficult time,” he added.
Here are the victims of the Hawaii wildfires named so far:
Robert Dyckman, aged 74, was named by Maui county officials on 15 August.
Dyckman was a resident of Lahaina.
In a statement after releasing Dyckman’s name, county officials said: “We understand that this is an incredibly difficult time for the families, and we ask that the media and the public respect the privacy of the grieving families. We will continue to work closely with the families to ensure that they are updated and supported throughout this process.”
Buddy Jantoc, aged 79, was among the other victims named by the County of Maui on 15 August.
Jantoc, who lived in the Hale Mahaolu retirement home in Lahaina, was a well-known musician in the area and was known for playing at local bars, hotels and malls.
“Besides his household, his different love was music,” Keshia Alaka’I, Jantoc’s granddaughter, told Sky News in an interview. “Music was his life. He performed each instrument. His home was like a music retailer. He did not actually have a settee, simply guitars.”
Ms Alaka’I stated that she “broke down” when native police known as her to substantiate that her grandfather’s stays had been discovered.
“He would call me every time there was a tropical storm or heavy rain. When I didn’t hear from him, I knew something was wrong,” she told Sky News.
Ms Alaka’I told the outlet that Jantoc was “loved by many” and added: “My papa was all the time the sunshine of the celebration, variety, beneficiant, by no means had a imply factor to say, he was all the time optimistic.”
Salote Takafua, Tony Takafua, Faaso and Malui Fonua Tone
Other victims include a family of four: Salote Takafua, her son Tony Takafua and parents Faaso and Malui Fonua Tone, Hawaii News Now reported.
The family supposedly became trapped in their car while trying to flee from the fires on 8 August.
In a statement, the family of the victims said: “The magnitude of our grief is indescribable, and their memories will forever remain etched in our hearts.”
Lylas Kanemoto, a family friend to the victims told The Associated Press that the loss of four members of the family was “unbearable”.
The County of Maui has yet to officially name the four family members among the deceased.
“At least we have closure for them, but the loss and heartbreak is unbearable for many. We as a community has to just embrace each other and support our families, friends, and our community to our best of our abilities,” she said.
Franklin Trejos, 68, died trying to protect his three-year-old golden retriever, Sam, in the fires, according to NBC News.
Trejos, who lived in Lahaina with Sam and longtime friends Shannon Weber-Bogar and Geoff Bogar.
Ms Weber-Bogar described Trejos as “the friendliest guy you would ever meet.”
The County of Maui has not officially named Trejos among the victims but Ms Weber-Bogar told NBC News that her husband found Trejos’ remains after returning to Lahaina.
Ms Weber-Bogas said Trejos and Mr Bogar were trying to escape the fires by driving out of Lahaina.
“He must have seen what was happening, just crawled into the hatchback with him and laid down on top of him,” Weber-Bogar said. “There’s more of Sam left than there was of Frank.”
Thousands of survivors are at present staying in shelters, in lodge rooms and Airbnb models, or with mates.
Around 2,000 houses and companies nonetheless don’t have electrical energy, Maui County wrote Tuesday evening, after the ability firm restored provide to over 10,000 clients. The fireplace additionally contaminated water provides in lots of areas.
Additional reporting from companies