Saturday, January 23, 2010


I still want to will finish the second part of that Proud post.

But first this.

Seven days before the Haitian earthquake, a baby girl, Elizabeth, was born. When the earthquake struck, her family’s concrete house collapsed, leaving the new-born trapped under tonnes of concrete. She lay there for eight days, presumed dead.

Until Wednesday, when she was pulled from the ruins by a searcher from France Aide Urgence.

"It was the Colombian firefighters who put a mark on the building to say that there was probably a victim, a child, in this house," Mr. Lampert said.

. . .

"And after, we give the baby to Colombian rescue, because it’s a symbol."

The French team could only find Elizabeth because of the Colombians, so they gave her to them.

. . .

The Colombians rushed the child to the United Nations compound and gave her to Canadian medics.

Maj. Annie Bouchard, commander of a medical platoon with DART, Canada’s Disaster Assistance Response Team, worked on Elizabeth with several Canadian medics.

"The baby was a bit dehydrated and cold and a bit hypoglycemic as well," Maj. Bouchard said. "Her blood sugar was really low."

They gave little Elizabeth some oxygen, put her on an IV drip and a vital signs monitor, and stabilized her. They asked some Sri Lankan peacekeepers to drive them to the Hopital St. Michel, where an American pediatrician was working.

"On the way to the hospital, the ambulance bottomed out," said Master Cpl. Richard Paul of Halifax, a senior med tech with DART.

"They lost the spare tire and bent up the frame. At that point, we decided we’d walk into St. Michael’s. It’s about 200 metres."

So the Canadians walked down the broken streets of Jacmel holding the baby and the IV and monitor and delivered her to the American and Haitian medical team there.

"As soon as the IV kicked in, and a little stimulation, she started to cry and pee," Maj. Bouchard said. "It just made our day. When she started to cry, everybody started to smile."

Navy Lt. Christine Crawley of Vancouver said it was a great feeling.

"Everyone was working together: Colombians, Canadians, Americans, Haitians," she said. "It was incredible."
Perronneau Ronald, cousin of 18-day-old Elizabeth Joassaint
adjusts the little girl’s blanket as she sleeps in her crib
at Hopital St.Michel de Jacmel in Jacmel,Haiti, on Friday.
Elizabeth was rescued after spending days buried under
tonnes of rubble. Photos by TIM KROCHAK /Staff)

Now what do you make of that?
Mr. Mellet, who held little Elizabeth when she was pulled from the house, said there are two lessons to take from the story.

"All the time, all the time, espoir (hope)," he said. "Espoir. And when a lot of teamwork, and a lot of countries, work together, the possibility is very important. It’s a lesson. It’s a lesson."


A lesson for the world.


Sarah said...

Great story Michelle. Thanks for sharing.

BTW... my site has been renamed -

Hope you come by and visit.

Sarah said...

Michelle - thanks for stopping by again. I'm glad we have stayed in touch and trying to take your advice and post more often. It's something I enjoy and feel a sense of accomplishment. Thanks for the encouragment.