Silt day care owner organizes relief effort for Peru earthquake victims |

Silt day care owner organizes relief effort for Peru earthquake victims

John GardnerGlenwood Springs, CO Colorado

SILT – The ground under Cecilia Wunderlich’s feet shook Wednesday, after hearing news of an 8.0 earthquake that struck her home country of Peru.Unable to reach her older sister, Zefia, who still lives in Lima, Wunderlich feared the worst. At the age of 5 in the early 1970s Wunderlich survived the Ancash earthquake, which killed more than 45,000 people, so this quake brought back unforgettable memories for Wunderlich.”Forget about it,” she said. “The ground would open up and close and I had to run up the street away from my home. A whole town disappeared, I remember.”She wasn’t using metaphors. The Ancash earthquake caused a landslide that buried the entire town of Yungay, Peru.The death toll from Wednesday’s quake reached 540 Sunday, with an estimated 1,500 injured. Wunderlich’s sister was able to call their mother, who lives in New Castle with Cecilia, and ease their worries Wednesday night.But knowing thousands of people were still in need of aid in the country she had called home for most of her life, Cecilia’s giving nature took over.”You have to understand that Peru is still very much like a third world country,” she said. “I’m just trying to do my best and help my people.”Cecilia heard that the United States and other countries were sending aid to the region and wanted to do something herself from Silt.”I would do the same thing for any other country,” she said. “I just want to help the people in Peru with whatever I can.”Monday morning Wunderlich will begin accepting donations at Rascal’s House Preschool and Childcare on Home Avenue in Silt. Donations of clothes, shoes, blankets, pillows, medical supplies and canned food will be accepted through Friday evening and then shipped to Lima’s San Juan Apostol church, which she attended as a child.From there, Father Louis at San Juan’s will distribute the donations to those in need. She isn’t asking for donations of money, just supplies at this time.”I just feel that I need to do something to help out,” she said. “I know how it is to be there, and it is not a pleasant place to be.”Contact John Gardner: 384-9114jgardner@postindependent.comPost Independent, Glenwood Springs, Colorado CO

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