A child's laughter in the midst of unfathomable destruction

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On my ninth day on the ground as an American Red Cross mass care volunteer responding to the 2009 tsunami devastation in American Samoa, I met a woman and her small child in the village of Nue Se'Taga. They were among many villagers who had lost most of their possessions and had come for food, fresh water and other supplies that we were delivering that day. After we gave the mom food and a comfort kit to take to her shelter, I took a moment to sit with them and gave some snacks to the child. I cannot convey the warmth I felt when I heard the child’s laughter and saw her joyous smile amidst the almost unfathomable pain and destruction of the surrounding village.

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