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Saturday, April 3, 2010

Haiti earthquake hit close to home for Mike Blanc

I wrote a story for today's newspaper about DT Mike Blanc, who is of Haitian descent. Naturally, January's earthquake in Haiti hit close to home for the senior. Here's how the story starts:
AUBURN, Ala. — For days after a 7.0 magnitude earthquake devastated Haiti in January, Mike Blanc waited anxiously for word from his father.

Blanc, a senior defensive tackle for Auburn, was born in South Florida, but his heritage is in Haiti. His mother left the island country around 30 years ago, and his father lives in Port-au-Prince, the country’s capital, not far from the epicenter of the quake.

The damage to the impoverished country was staggering. The Haitian government estimated more than 200,000 died with many thousands more injured. Close to a million people were left homeless in the aftermath of one of the most destructive natural disasters in recent memory.

“During that time, it was sad,” Blanc said. “Something like that that you have no total control of, you’ve just got to pray and trust in God and that’s what I did.”

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