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Local Mother Feels Impact of Typhoon

PHILIPPINO MOTHERWESTFIELD, Mass. (WGGB) –  One local mother is left wondering where her son is and how he’s doing after Typhoon Haiyan strikes near his home.

Genevieve Hovermale lives in Westfield, but her son, Gary Hovermale, lives in the Philippines, not far from where the Typhoon hit. Genivieve talked to her son on the phone just a day before the disaster.

“He said they were expecting the worst typhoon that ever hit that area, so it was a little scary. He said they were making preparations,” she recounted.

After he retired from the navy, Gary and his wife moved to her native country and had a daughter together. And because of Gary’s military career, today’s uncertainty is a familiar feeling.

“My personal issue is that I don’t know if my son was evacuated or not.” she explained.

This time around Genevieve has made dozens of phone calls, looking for a list of survivors, or hoping to be put on a list to be contacted when names start  coming in, but she hasn’t had any luck. Now, her maternal instincts are coming to the surface.

“I want to say it hurts, because no matter how old the child, a mother always wants better and safer for her child,” she said. “I guess that’s maybe a little piece of this, is that I feel helpless that I can’t do something to help.”

But until she gets news on her son and his family, Genevieve is holding onto hope and her faith.

“I’m holding my rosary right now, for strength,” she says.

If you have a loved one in the Philippines you are looking to connect with, you can contact Merideth Griswold at the American Red Cross at 413-737-4306 x1929. You can also call the State Department at 1-888-407-4747.

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