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Relief Workers in India Concerned about Sanitation; Sri Lankans Work to Rebuild; Expat Survives Tsunami on Bridge; CARE Concentrates on Providing Safe Water; Survivors Share Stories

Aired January 2, 2005 - 20:00   ET


CAROL LIN, ANCHOR: Across the vast disaster area, the sense of shock is giving way. The sense of urgency is beginning to grow. I'm Carol Lin at the CNN Center in Atlanta.
In this next special hour, we are going to watch a race against time, a race to bring in food, to ease the suffering and to save lives, rebuild and somehow move on.

First, I've got some other stories right now making news.

Reuter's is reporting that tests have confirmed a case of Mad Cow Disease in Canada. Canada's only previous case was in 2003. The cow came from a dairy herd in Alberta. Officials say there is no risk to the public and the cow did not get into the food chain.

And Sunday morning violence north of Baghdad. A suicide bomber rams his car into a bus filled with Iraqi soldiers. Twenty-one of them killed and an Iraqi civilian woman also killed, as well as the bomber. It happened near a coalition base in Balad.

He was first elected to Congress in 1978 and never lost one of his 13 reelection bids. California Congressman Robert Matsui died last night in Washington of a rare blood disorder. He went in the hospital Christmas Eve with pneumonia and did not recover. Robert Matsui was 63.

And now we move on to Asia, where the death toll keeps rising. Just minutes ago, new numbers from Indonesia raised the overall confirmed death toll to 155,000. And the earth is still shaking. More than a dozen aftershocks have hit since Friday. And they are strong. Fifteen reached magnitude 5, four were magnitude 6.

Now, little is known from some hard to reach areas and hard hit island chains of the Indian Ocean.

And food and medicine are on the way. The U.S. military is helping to get past bottlenecks and flying it to the survivors. A delegation headed by Secretary of State Colin Powell and Florida Governor Jeb Bush is flying to Thailand.

U.N. and regional leaders are praising U.S. efforts. The worldwide commitment is now more than $2 billion, although both Thailand and India are declining international aid.

Now, the Indian government has reported nearly 10,000 deaths with at least 5,5000 people missing. CNN's Ram Ramgopal joins me now via videophone from Chennai, which is the coastal city formerly known as Madras.

Ram, with so many -- so much aid coming into the area, what are you seeing on the ground to help the people the most?

RAM RAMGOPAL, CNN CORRESPONDENT: Carol, the situation, certainly, on the ground as we can see it is different in different areas. I'm coming to you from the capital of the state of Tamilnadu, Chennai, which is a very big urban center.

So the aid and relief distribution here is going very smoothly. Certainly, a large number of trucks carrying food, clothes, water, the works. You can see them all over the city.

Certainly, this city took some bit of the brunt of the tsunami attacks. Certainly, in other parts of the state, further south, as you travel south you do notice devastation, as well. In those areas, it took a little while for aid to get there, but now it appears that certainly the supply chain appears to have been, certainly, sorted out, and we are seeing a large number of trucks on the move, a large number of volunteers.

As you mentioned, Carol, earlier, the Indian government has -- certainly does not want international aid expressly. But at the same time, there are a large number of people working here from non- government organizations, including the United Nations, several other charities who are on the ground, helping with this effort.

But it is a massive, massive effort indeed, Carol.

LIN: And so many people now crowded into refugee camps and makeshift refugee camps. Already some reports of disease symptoms breaking out in small pocketed areas.

Ram, what are people doing to control the spread of disease or to prevent it altogether?

RAMGOPAL: Well, Carol, yes, you're absolutely right. There are some instances where disease, as you can imagine, when hundreds upon thousands of people living in very close relief camps, close to each other in relief camps. There is a big concern about hygiene.

And as unpleasant as it might sound, you know, this is the reality. People eating food very close to where they are having, you know, defecate or urinate. So unfortunately, this is the reality that many health workers fear.

Right now, police (ph), what they are trying to do is to prevent any outbreaks by setting up the preemptive measures: vaccinations, antibiotic shots, and also ensuring a clean supply of water. Drinking water, certainly, but more importantly, water for sanitation, water for washing people's hands.

And at least from -- the good news, that there is such a -- such a phrase that can be used to describe it, is that officials on the ground say that there has been no major outbreak yet. But they do acknowledge that it could all change in just a matter of hours.

LIN: You bet. Ram, as you were talking, we were watching some pictures of the U.N. delivering some of the food and fresh water supplies. And it was heartening to see some of the children there being cared for.

Well, some of the most harrowing images of people being swept away by the water came from the city of Galle, Sri Lanka. For residents, the loss of life and property is simply incomprehensible. But many say their focus now is on the future.

CNN's Satinder Bindra reports.


SATINDER BINDRA, CNN CORRESPONDENT (voice-over): Their families are dead. Their homes have been smashed, and their livelihoods destroyed. But it will take more than a killer wave to shatter the spirit of many people in Galle. They team up to bring their fishing boats back to the edge of the sea.

For all its destroyed and the people its consumed, the ocean here is still rich in fish, and these fishermen realize they must get back to work or they'll starve.

"I'm willing to borrow money at 15 or 20 percent interest to rebuild my boat," says this fisherman. "But I have to go back."

Elsewhere in the city, bridges are being rebuilt. Everyone realizes without them, relief efforts will fail and many more Sri Lankans will die.

Last Sunday, the city was flattened by a tsunami. This eyewitness video shows the scale of destruction.

(on camera) One week after, the city is slowly trying to get back on its feet. It's trying to blot out the pain of the past and to secure a future.

(voice-over) But for all their efforts, some residents fall back into a sea of depression. They seek the company of others. Collective grief somehow seems less painful.

"If my mother was alive, I could do everything," says resident Dam Viturana (ph). "Now that my mother has gone, I can't do anything."

Eight members of Dam Viturana's (ph) family died here. Two bodies still haven't been recovered. His business, too, has been wiped out, and he's now moved to a shelter.

"I think it will take all of Sri Lankans," he says, "at least 20 years to recover."

Just a few yards away from Viturana's (ph) home, his neighbors try to get on with their lives. With their tears slowly drying up, they believe it's time for Galle to move on.

Satinder Bindra, CNN, Galle, Southern Sri Lanka.


LIN: With such desperate need out there, if you want to send a donation to a relief organization, we've got several numbers for you. We're showing some of them right now. We are going to be showing some of these numbers throughout the broadcast, so please, feel free to grab a pen. It's not too late to get these phone numbers. Stay with us through the hour. You'll see them again.

In the meantime, he had retired to paradise and was on the beach in Phuket, Thailand, when the tsunami came rolling in. Up next, a survivor of the disaster is going to join me live to talk about the moment the giant wave hit, as well as what's happening right now as the area is cleaning up and trying to recover.


UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: It was just horrible, and I'm just so thankful that I've still got my two kids with me.


LIN: Who could forget her story? She had to make that horrible choice: which child should she save? It's just one of many survivor stories you are going to see this hour.

And later, the images of the tsunami, frame by frame.


LIN: Survivors of the tsunamis are telling remarkable and horrifying stories they'll surely be repeating the rest of their lives.

Bill Smith thought he had retired to a quiet beach in Thailand. Last Sunday morning, as he rode his bike on a seawall, his quiet world suddenly changed. He's on the phone with me right now from Phuket.

Bill, it's wonderful to be able to talk to you. What a retirement! How did you manage to get away from those waves?

BILL SMITH, TSUNAMI SURVIVOR: Well, I was heading out along the sea wall, and I was looking out all the sand (ph) out there. I had never been there before. And when I noticed the wall of water coming across the bay.

I really didn't quite know what was happening, but a wave picked up all the boats in the harbor instead of bringing them into the sea wall, and when the water hit the sea wall, I figured it was pretty serious.

And I happened to be about 50 meters from a bridge, so I ran for the bridge. And as I got to the bridge and ran up on the -- up the incline a bit, the water came across the road about 12 feet high and crashed into the hotels and businesses on the other side of the road.

LIN: When you saw the water pulling out, away, and exposing the sand and boats beached in the sand, did you know what was happening? Because I've heard that seasoned people who work around the seas can recognize the signs of a tsunami. What was going through your mind?

SMITH: Yes, really, I was just kind of marveling at the -- at the scene. I'd never seen the tide quite so low that gives you outside (ph) and they were down on the sand. And we have a big barge type mooring place for the yachts to come in. And that was down on the sand, too. And I'd never seen such a thing before.

So I just was stopped and looking at it when I saw the wave coming.

LIN: Well, Bill, you went to paradise to retire, but it looks like they're going to need your skills as a construction worker. You used to do some building here in the United States. It looks like they might be needing your help in the years to come.

What are you going to do?

SMITH: Yes. I'm going to put an ad on the local Internet here, the Phuket Gazette, and offer my services for that. But you're right.

But I have to tell you that it's still -- actually, it's 8:30 in the morning here, Monday morning. And the sun is shining, and it's 79 degrees outside. It's a beautiful day and if you were half -- half a kilometer back from the beach, you wouldn't know -- would never know that there's anything wrong.

LIN: Well, Bill, our heartfelt congratulations for surviving and stay in touch. It looks like you're going back to work, this time for people who really need you. Thanks very much, Bill Smith.

SMITH: OK. Thank you. Bye-bye.

LIN: Well, Indonesia is the country with the highest death toll in this disaster. And as we -- as we've been reporting, the country's health ministry has just raised the overall count to 94,000 dead, an increase of 14,000 since the last update. The earthquake and tsunamis literally wipes out towns and cities right off the map.

Bud Crandall of CARE International, Indonesia, joins me now from Jakarta. Bud, good to have you here.

What is being done right now by your organization? What is the most urgent need?

BUD CRANDALL, CARE INTERNATIONAL: CARE right now has a team of about 25 people in Banda Aceh. We've been working with the displacement settlements around Banda Aceh. Yesterday, we went out to 14 of the settlements.

One of the things we've been doing, we've been focusing on providing safe water, which obviously is a very critical need for the people in the camps. Probably sanitation and water are the most important needs at this time. There's been a lot of support for acute medical care.

What we do, we have a product that we've been developing in Indonesia over the last year as part of a worldwide effort. It's called Safe Water Systems Initiative. And it's simply a chlorine solution in a small bottle. People can take a cap full of the water and put it in 10 to 20 liters of water, let it sit for about 30 minutes, and it will then give them a source of safe water. And it's a very efficient way of providing clean water to the people, rather than actually trucking water out.

So we've been going out and distributing these small, 100 ml bottles and instructing people on how to use it. So we've been basically targeting probably one of the most critical needs now, which is the safe water amongst the most vulnerable people living in these displacement camps.

LIN: Right. Bud...

CRANDALL: Right now there's about 175 displacement camps.

LIN: A hundred and 75.


LIN: OK. Displacement camps. And a lot of people in each of them. Many aid organizations are saying that there's utter confusion, that the government really has not had a handle on how to get aid into these remote areas. Lots of aid organizations have aid piling up at the airports.

Are you having trouble getting out to these remote areas?

CRANDALL: I think we have to be fair to the government. I saw a report where there was about 2,000 police officers in the city of Banda Aceh and 1,500 were killed. And the other 500 survivors have probably lost many, many of their immediate family members. So essentially, the government staff have been decimated by this.

It is hard to get out to these regions. The roads have been destroyed. The infrastructure was not really that strong to begin with anyway. So along the west coast especially, areas have been really devastated. Seventy to 90 percent of the people have been killed.

I think a lot of the people now are fleeing these areas. They're going into the highland inland areas. They're fleeing into places where they have family members. And many of the most vulnerable are now moving into informal settlement camps.

So you know, it is true the aid is backed up, but it's a very, very difficult situation at this time...

LIN: Right. CRANDALL: ... to get aid to these most remote areas. So I think the -- a major and important thrust would be to get the aid to the settlement camps.

LIN: Bud Crandall, CARE International, thank you very much for giving us, frankly, the reality on the ground. You've got a big job ahead of you.

In Thailand, Sri Lanka, Indonesia and India, it was a wall of water from the tsunami that took so many lives. But amid the tragedy, some incredible tales of survival. The victims' stories, in their own words, coming up next.


LIN: Even if you've heard a lot about the tsunami disaster, please stay with us right now, because in this half hour, you are going to see the most dramatic pictures and hear stories you will never forget: survivor stories about the awesome forces of nature about the mysterious workings of fate, chance and providence.



UNIDENTIFIED MALE: Oh, (expletive deleted).

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: The waves hit, and we have big waves in the channel. It wasn't a wave. It was -- the wave that hit, that there was just sort of a wall behind it. And it just kept coming. Nothing was going to stop that wave. And it was -- it was just the biggest wave I've ever seen.

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: That wave is...


UNIDENTIFIED MALE: ... it could be 20 feet tall, easy. Get in! Get in! Get in!

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: The first indications we had was vibrations which came through probably about 8 or 9 a.m. in the morning. And then I was in my bed at the time. First I heard a crashing sound coming through from the front of the building.

We were lucky that this hotel we were in had an underground car park, which took a large part of the impact.

The wave came through on the first floor. I heard a crashing, banging, screaming sound. I rushed out the front to see people basically bleeding everywhere, broken bones, people thrown into outer windows, everywhere.

We were under about 10 feet of water at the time, and the situation was terrible. UNIDENTIFIED MALE: There's no way any person can tell you what emotion you feel when you see a wall of water one story high flood the lobby of our hotel, park three cars in the back of the lobby, and you see people screaming and running. And you don't know what you can do to get them out of there. There is no emotion.

UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: We were having coffee and the woman in the coffee shop said to us, "The water is too high." She kept saying that, and he said, "What does that mean?" And not a minute later, she just screamed, "Run!" And we all just started running.

And the water -- the water came really quickly. So we just started jogging through the streets, just trying to get to the mountains. And my friend and I just started running, and every time we turned a corner we thought we lost -- or the water had stopped. But when we'd come to a through street, the water would be there.

So we ran for about several streets with the water right at our heels. And then when we got to -- behind several buildings and streets, there -- we got to the base of the mountain. And it was like a mass exodus out of the city.

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: I couldn't judge how fast it was moving, because it was behind me. We were just running. But you know, it would carry everything that it had destroyed on its way in. It was carrying it on its way out. So there was furniture and buildings and pieces of everything.

UNIDENTIFIED MALE (through translator): Suddenly, there were huge waves that hit the seashore, and people started running helter skelter. A lot of women were trapped because they couldn't run, and a lot of children were also trapped. About 60 people are supposed to have died. We have never seen anything like this before, and we are really very scared.

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: "I lost everyone and everything," says 30- year-old Yusniati (ph). "My four children and my husband are gone, gone. I was holding my 8-month-old in the waters, but the waves pulled us apart."

UNIDENTIFIED MALE (through translator): We've never seen anything like this. We were fishing normally in the sea when we were shocked by the huge waves. We fled for shore and prayed for Allah to save our lives.

UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE (through translator): I was alone and shouted for help, but no one was here. Everything got washed away, including boat and net. Nothing is left in any house. All our belongings are gone.

UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: (speaking foreign language)

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: Then I thought, OK, it's going to stop. It's going to hit our ankles. And my youngest daughter dropped her -- her journal, and I went to pick it up. And when I picked it up, I heard this sound that can only be described as, perhaps, a jet engine bearing down on us.

And trees started to break, and then what looked like a wave that was 10 to 15 feet, not in the traditional sense of a wave but water, massive water, rushing at us, closing the gap. I didn't think we could ever run that fast.

UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: The water just came up like a gigantic wave and took the water bungalow (ph). It took all of the deck. The deck came flying in through the windows, and I -- I said, "Let's go, you know."

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: Started up, being able to stand up in it. And then carpets (ph) and chairs and mattresses started coming at you. And I got out of the way, and ended up on some sort of, like, pier going out to sea. And there was people on the beach in the early morning just being washed out.

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: We climbed up this tree while the water was still breaking right at our feet, the waves. We head up the tree and went higher and higher until we were right at the top and we couldn't go any higher. And we just waited until the water level eventually dropped.

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: Before the wave came in, there was the massive undertow, and in 15 to 30 seconds, something like 200 yards -- I'm sorry, 2,000 yards of water just got sucked right out to sea. And anybody who was in the water at that point, up to their knees or so, got yanked right out. There was just no hope for those people.

People described seeing literally thousands of people on this beach in one minute, and the next minute none. Those people were gone.

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: Suddenly, we saw the water advance. But at first we thought it was just the sea. We thought it was just going a bit angry (ph). Then the second wave was a lot stronger, and we rushed upstairs. It happened a few times with about an hour in between. And the third wave that hit the hotel devastated the bottom half, the lower floors and so on. And we were trapped on the third floor.

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: The children were playing on the beach when I came running down to find them and my wife, Libby. The sea off Kao Ya (ph) was a flat calm, but with one big exception. A 20-foot wave was coming in shore very quickly, indeed.

Five-year-old Peter was staring at the wave, mesmerized. I lurched forward and grabbed him.

Obviously, with the wave pursuing us pretty rapidly, Peter and I were moving rather more quickly than we are this morning. My wife, Libby, and my daughter, Elizabeth, headed for our bungalow over there, but I knew that myself and the little fellow here certainly wouldn't make it.

We listened to the wave breaking on the beach. There was a big bang as it came through those trees. I suppose we'd reached about here before we were -- we were washed away. We were then carried about 40 yards.

The wave carried us both through this little gap between these two bungalows. All the time, I was acutely aware of all the debris that the wave had picked up on its journey. Peter and I ended up, actually, down there in this field. And here are some of the tree trunks and other bits of debris that the wave carried with us. Fortunately, they missed us.

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: The rooms filled up within 30 seconds, first of all to about three foot. And then we all got out of the rooms, and then -- and one of our friends was out of the hospital (ph). He couldn't get out of the room. He woke up, and was asleep in his bed, lying. Woke up in water. Had to throw a TV out the window to climb out.

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: We turned around, and all of a sudden there was about a 25- or 30-foot wall of water rushing towards you, probably at about 40 miles an hour. And you had little time to try and get to higher ground.

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: Having stood in the water, literally within two seconds, it was from ankle height to shoulder height. You usually imagine a tidal wave would be much like they're usually in the movies: a big crescent wave. The waves that hit Phuket and certainly, from the reports I've had from other resorts, they all came in very hard and fast. It was a bit like watching a bath run to the top.

UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: There was this terrible roaring noise. When we looked through the glass doors, and this torrent of mighty water just came down the steps and through the doors. It washed me away into the playroom, and the glass doors were smashed by the water, and I just couldn't keep my footing. I was very frightened.

UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: ... the steps and through the doors. It washed me away into the playroom, and the glass doors were smashed by the water. And I just couldn't keep my footing. I was very frightened.

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: There was this hut and we heard this little girl crying. All we heard was a whimpering, so we went in there and dragged her out. She ended up going to the hospital and we just found out today that she didn't make it either. But four others in that hut. All of them perished yesterday. And this was a small village, about 800 people. We lost five right there.


CAROL LIN, HOST: The words of the children who lost their parents may be the most jarring of all. Up next, we are going to hear from some of them and from those who helped save so many lives.

Also, take a look at our screen right now and please grab some pencils or pens. We're going to give you some phone numbers for relief organizations. And we are going to repeat these numbers as well as others later in this hour. So go ahead and try and write these down, but we will show you more numbers as this program continues.


LIN: We continue now with survivor stories. In a world that was washing away, some people still thought of others and tried to make a life or death difference.


UNIDENTIFIED MALE: Children are less able to run away from this kind of a flood. They're less able to hang onto a tree. They're less able to swim for their lives. And so we're afraid that, in fact, children were disproportionately affected, especially those who were caught in the raging torrents.


UNIDENTIFIED MALE: I'm searching for my mother, Ria Eckokam (ph). She's from Holland. She's 53 years old. She's missing from the Khao Lak Maryland (ph) Beach resort. We have still hope, and we're not going to leave without here. It's sad, but dead or alive, we have to find her.

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: We had three false alarms already. Last night we found someone on Kurlanza (ph) who's called Pierce Symon (ph). That was spelled with a "Y" rather than an "I" in the Simon. And when we managed to track him down at about midnight, it was just someone completely different from England who was on holiday.

So you have lots of -- lots of leads which you follow and you get excited, and then you find some information which sort of takes you off that trail. But you have to remain positive. Miracles do happen, and if you start to believe that the worst has happened, you start to crumble. So you just remain positive all the time.

UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: Horrible. Just sounded like a jet engine just, maybe five feet behind you. People screaming, and maybe the water hit them. And trees cracking, houses floating. It was just so horrible.

UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: I was in the water in the middle of the sea. And I didn't have anything with me. My bag was gone in the wash of -- in the water. And only my dagpal (ph) and I just -- I was tired of swimming. I should have the God given gift, my father given gifts with me. I have to swim. I started swimming with lots and lots of hope that I might find somebody. My father might be with them and my family might be waiting for me in Tentian (ph). I still have hopes that my parents are alive, searching for me in Tentian (ph). I'm all right, Papa, Mama. Please come back again (ph).

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: And then it came in again. I could hear my wife scream. I knew where she was, and I was hiding behind a wall. And I went around to -- to get her. And then just all hell broke loose. And that was the last time I saw her.

UNIDENTIFIED MALE (through translator): I was at work when some people came to me and told me that huge waves were lashing the shore and my family was in danger. I rushed home and managed to rescue my mother. I took her to the hospital.

By the time I returned, I realized my daughter was missing. I looked up hospitals for her but could not find her. After three days, I found her body in the debris of my house.

UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: We left paradise. It was a beautiful island. And we came back to just hell.

UNIDENTIFIED MALE (through translator): We never felt that it was a tsunami. It was a big tide. They have big tides there every day.

Well, it came and went, and everybody calmed down and came back to look at the damage, find their loved ones. That's when the second wave came.

An elderly lady was stuck in the side of a balcony, and she was lying in the water on her back with her head just barely above water. Chairs and benches and all sorts of junk were piling up on her and crushing her. Her elderly husband couldn't help her, but two other guys came running up, and five of us pulled her out of there.

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: There was a lot of panic, you know. A lot of people were hysterical. A lot of the children were grabbing -- grabbing hold of me and people around.

And like, a lot of the mothers of children who -- like, there was one particular mother who had about three or children around her. And obviously, she didn't have enough arms to hold her children. She was imploring me to grab hold of her children and look after her children, which I did.

So I was trying to grab hold of as many people as possible, as well as to clear myself from the train when the second wave hit.

There was, like, a sea of dead bodies, children and women mainly. And the majority of them were children. So I had to clear a path through the water by pushing these people away and heading as far inland as possible. So it was just a case of survival. That's all it was (ph). UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: But to be here and sitting home and all that we see on television, so we have to be here and see what we can do, if we can find her and figure out what happened to her.

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: Since it happened on Boxing Day, just sat by the phone, you know, 24-7. I haven't heard from him. So now I took the bull by the horns and I'm flying out tomorrow to Thailand myself.

UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: We sent pictures out. There's posters all around the hospital, you know. Everybody is trying their best.



LIN: So what is next for the survivors? What do they need most? Well, they'll tell us in their own words.

Plus, emotional reunions, coming up.


LIN: Thank you for watching our special coverage on the tsunami. We are listening to survivor stories.

It has been a week and a day since the earth's crust moved and the walls of water struck. And in that time, some survivors have returned home. Others have taken stock of the enormous need.


UNIDENTIFIED MALE: Many regions still are untouched by medical hands. My personal opinion, having seen the destruction, is that these numbers that have been given, based on the body counts, are only a small fraction of the -- of the final death toll, what it's likely to be.

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: Perhaps the biggest challenge now is the water and the sanitation and the emergency food and the emergency shelter for hundreds of thousands of homeless.

UNIDENTIFIED MALE (through translator): We are trying to provide people what they require the most at this time, like food, utensils, water, clothing, et cetera.

UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: It's all water and sanitation equipment: water tanks, pumps, taps and latrine slabs. So basically, toilet facilities. There's 27 tons going on the plane, and what it will do is bring clean water to at least 175,000 people.

UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: We're right now, just here, we're collecting money. Yesterday, as well, we collected money from the temple.

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: People are bringing everything: clothes, food materials and medicine, syringes, bandages or whatever -- whatever they don't need it, they are bringing.

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: There's going to be a huge operation. Clearly, we're four days out from this event already. Bodies are lying unrefrigerated, deteriorating rapidly.

The Thai authorities have done a quite excellent job, I think, in the -- in quite extraordinarily difficult circumstances. This would -- this would challenge the most developed country in the world, the scale of this problem.

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: "The sea is like our mother, the land our father," he says. "We love the sea and respect it like God. But now, we are wary."

"We are petrified," he says. "We wonder now, can we continue our livelihood on the high seas?"

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: They were so generous. They were missing boats (ph). They were missing their families. And they brought us food and supplies. And we all sort of camped out on top of this jungle.

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: I was speaking with people who have lost their homes, and a number of fishermen have lost their livelihoods. And to be able to get on a plane and get away from it, left me with a very unsettling feeling.

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: There's no villages left standing between Meulahbo and Chalang, which is about 100 kilometers north of Meulahbo. It's like a nuclear blast has hit the area. And it's completely leveled everything except just for a few structures. We're seeing nothing at all of the ones that were built out of wood and thatched roofs, and that constitutes, probably, the most.

UNIDENTIFIED MALE (through translator): Entire families have been wiped away. Children have been separated from their parents. There are dead bodies all over. We are more worried about the people who are in the forests and are injured, because no aid reached them yet. I hope the government can do something for them.

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: "My boat is somewhere out there," he says. "I don't know where my family is."

UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE (through translator): The water was rising and the sea was coming. We ran for our lives, but it caught us, and the water almost came up to our necks. We managed to escape from the first wave, which destroyed our house.

The second wave came and took us by surprise. There was just so much water I didn't know what to do. When the second wave came, we were looking for our son, and my husband went out to search for him and found him in a tree. He rescued them, and both of them were running for their lives.

Later, my son was found alive, but my husband was missing. He had been drowned. UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE (through translator): We don't know what to do next. Right now, we don't have a source of income. We'll need to look for jobs. They are scarce.

UNIDENTIFIED MALE (through translator): My main thoughts were about the people who died. Nothing was clear. We figured some had been taken to sea

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: But my friend here, they all die. Dead. I don't have one -- anybody. I have nothing, but nothing left.

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: When I saw him, it was -- it was really exciting for me. When you see what happened, you see the carnage, and you realize that -- how lucky we are, as a family.

ANDERSON COOPER, HOST, "ANDERSON COOPER 360": They called him the miracle boy. And today, there was one more miracle waiting for little Hannes Bergstrom: his father.

The 20-month-old was separate from his parents when the tsunami hit Phuket. An American family found him, unconscious, wrapped in blankets at the top of a hill. No one knew if he'd even survive, but he did.

His father, recovering from his injuries in another hospital, wondered if he'd ever see his little boy again. His prayers were answered.

UNIDENTIFIED MALE (through translator): I was frightened. I did not think I would survive. The rescue team found my son in the mangrove, not me.

UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: I knew I had to let go of one of them, and I just thought, I'm going to let go of the one that's the oldest. And a lady grabbed hold of him for a moment, but she said that she had to let him go because she was going under. And I was screaming, trying to find him, and we thought he was dead.

I'm just thankful that I've still got my two kids with me.

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: I can't imagine that, if you had just lost your entire -- entire worldly possessions and perhaps more, parents, children, that you would turn around and offer kindness.

One man went down to the village, or whatever was left of it. I don't know how he did it. And brought up rice, and some of the best tasting rice we've ever had. And he didn't have to do that. I don't know why he did it. I think it's a testament to the Thai -- the Thai people, the generosity of spirit, just a magical, magical group.



LIN: As incredible as video can be, sometimes a still image can be even more powerful. When we return, snapshots of the tsunami and its aftermath, frame by frame,


LIN: The tsunami that hit south Asia and Africa a week ago has created some indelible images of devastation and suffering.

In some parts of Indonesia's Aceh province, there is barely a building left standing. More than 94,000 people in Indonesia have died from the earthquake and tsunamis that followed.

In Phuket, Thailand, this image of a young boy holding a hand written note, asking for help in finding his parents and two brothers. They have been missing since the tsunami ripped through the resort area. Look at the look in his eyes.

CNN's Beth Nissen takes a look at some of the other images that put a human face on an enormous tragedy.


BETH NISSEN, CNN CORRESPONDENT (voice-over): After all the home video of the tsunami, it is startling to see it in a photograph, to see what witnesses meant by a wall of water. To see, captured in a frame, what the monstrous waves did to resorts and villages in Thailand, southern India, Indonesia, Sri Lanka.

To see what the churning water did to people in these places, only vaguely remembered from high school geography, Tanda Nadu (ph), Nicobar, and Madras, and Sumatra, Colombo.

It all happened so fast, the waves and mud and debris, burying the old and the young, especially the young. Those two small or too weak to hold onto anything as the water surged in or pulled themselves to safety before the receding waves pulled them out to sea.

The still pictures could hardly show the scope of human losses, in their mounting thousands. But they could show the loss, face by face.

It all happened so fast, so little time for ceremony, the marking of a life. Officials struggled to keep records of the dead. Volunteers hurried to build coffins, fill them, close them and send the enclosed souls onward.

Even days later, so many souls were still missing. Relatives searched for survivors. Survivors searched for their families. Dazed, battered tourists went home to Sweden and Norway, Germany and New Zealand, South Korea and South Africa. Dazed residents were evacuated by the thousands to higher, drier ground.

Those who could, stayed where they were in what was left of home. Collected water, collected food, stood in line for both and for fuel.

Slowly, rubbled airstrips were cleared. The first of the aid from around the world arrived: emergency water supplies, critical medicines, fat sacks of food, bundles of clothing. Tent villages were set up for millions of the suddenly homeless. The wounded were treated in hospitals hastily cleared of debris, in open air clinics set up on beaches.

Doctors readied for the next wave of the disaster, disease, with tetanus shots, anti-malarials. There was little anyone could do to prepare survivors for the hardest part of what is to come: simply going on.

Millions are still stunned by loss. So much life and hope washed away. So little to hold on to except faith that those so violently wrenched from the world have found peace. Faith that those left behind in the world will again find peace. Somehow. Somewhere. Someday.

Beth Nissen, CNN, New York.


LIN: And that is all for this hour of CNN LIVE SUNDAY. At 10 p.m. Eastern on "CNN SUNDAY NIGHT LIVE," please join me and Anderson Cooper, who is going to be reporting in from South Asia, amid the devastation and destruction. I will see you then.



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