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Hawaii Red Cross Volunteers Deploying to Arizona Wildfire

Christina Bell, Red Cross volunteer deploys to AZ wildfire response
Our hearts go out to everyone affected by the tragic events in Yarnell, Arizona. -- Coralie Matayoshi, CEO of the Hawaii State Chapter

Nine Hawaii Red Cross volunteers are deploying to help with the Red Cross response to the deadly Arizona wildfire. Three nurses (two from Oahu and one from the Big Island) left yesterday. Four more are leaving today to work in sheltering and casework (one from Maui, three from the Big Island). Two Oahu volunteers are leaving this weekend. Others are on standby. Additional volunteers in mental health are being recruited.

“Our hearts go out to everyone affected by the tragic events in Yarnell, Arizona,” said Coralie Matayoshi, Chief Executive Officer of the Hawaii State Chapter of the American Red Cross. “We extend our deepest condolences to the families of the 19 brave firefighters who lost their lives protecting their community. Our local volunteers will not only share their aloha, but will gain valuable experience to help Hawaii prepare for the next major disaster here in the islands.”

Red Cross workers are helping people affected by the blaze about 80 miles northwest of Phoenix, providing food, water, shelter and mental health services for those affected. The fire forced hundreds of people to leave their homes. The wildfire had closed a major roadway in the area, dividing the response area almost in half. Red Cross workers opened shelters on both sides of the fire to best help people in need. The Red Cross is working with officials to determine how to best support people in this community.

The Red Cross is responding to several wildfires in the West as well as flooding in several Eastern states with food, shelter, relief supplies and emotional support. To support these efforts, please make a donation to Red Cross Disaster Relief at or by calling 1-800-RED CROSS. People can also text REDCROSS to 90999 to make a $10 donation.

About the American Red Cross:

The American Red Cross shelters, feeds and provides emotional support to victims of disasters; supplies about 40 percent of the nation's blood; teaches skills that save lives; provides international humanitarian aid; and supports military members and their families. The Red Cross is a not-for-profit organization that depends on volunteers and the generosity of the American public to perform its mission. For more information, please visit or visit us on Twitter at @RedCross.