Disasters like the Haitian earthquake have a way of affecting people who aren’t directly involved.
Dr. Kathy Reilly Fallon of Armonk was swept into the fallout of the earthquake when a patient came to her office in New York City needing care for his fractured left foot, ankle and lower leg.
Jean Rodouin, an American citizen born in Haiti, had been visiting the country during the earthquake and came back to his midtown Manhattan apartment with the help of the American Embassy.
He was in the back yard of his home in a Port-au-Prince suburb when the quake struck and the house collapsed. Rodouin was knocked to the ground by falling debris and his wife was buried in the rubble.
“What you see on television is worse when you see it in person,” he said.
As Rodouin lay on the ground not sure if his legs would move, his wife was freed from the collapsed house.
“If you see where she was out this is unbelievable,” Rodouin, who has lived here since 1966, said by phone from his apartment this week. His wife, who spends most of her time in Haiti, has stayed in there and is doing well, he said.
“I know it’s God that let her come out,” he said.
Today, Rodouin, a retired hotel worker, is having an operation to repair his injuries and he will be confined to his house for a time while he recovers. Fallon has asked friends to donate supplies and help cook hot meals to get him through his recovery. She has also organized children to write him get well cards.
Rodouin hopes to return to Haiti when he is recovered and Fallon plans to collect supplies to send with him.
“Thank God they sent me to her,” he said.