Meanwhile, Edwin Hamblin from Monroe, Utah, is thinking about his son, Jeremy Hamblin, who is stationed in Guam over six thousand miles away.
“Some of the pictures he sent me are just total devastation,” he said.
Typhoon Mawar is the strongest storm to impact Guam in decades since Super Typhoon Pongsona in 2002. The maximum sustained winds could go up to 140 mph with gusts up to 165 mp, according to the Joint Typhoon Warning Center.
Edwin was worried when he heard about it heading toward Guam where his son is. He was shocked to see just how hard it hit.
Waiting to hear from Jeremy was nerve-wracking.
“Not knowing for a while, you know, like ‘Is he okay?’… you hope and pray. I was relieved when he finally called,” he said.
Jeremy is stationed in Guam with the U.S. military. Edwin said although he was worried when he first learned about the typhoon, knowing that military housing is well-built gave him comfort, though it was surprising to see what his son was experiencing.
“His front door is made out of steel, and the wind was blowing so hard it was pushing the door in a little bit, and he said water was actually blowing in through the cracks of the door,” Edwin said.
Jeremy told Edwin that it sounded like a freight train was coming at them for hours. Edwin said his son described seeing power lines and trees down everywhere as well as cars and storage containers blown around like toys.
Jeremy is reportedly stationed on the northern part of the island, which was hit by the worst of the storm. The internet and power were out, but Jeremy was able to call his father to tell him that he was safe. For now, Jeremy’s base remains under lockdown.
“They knew it was going to be bad, and they kind of had an expectation of it, but then he says when it actually happened, it was just way more intense than what they actually expected,” Edwin said.
Edwin is glad he has been able to communicate with his son, knowing, despite all the damage he’s been seeing around him, that he’s okay. He said his prayers are with everyone there.