Plymouth County

Rochester family awaiting word on loved one missing in Maui wildfires

ROCHESTER, Mass. — Fire-ravaged Lahaina on the Hawaiian Island of Maui bears little resemblance to the historic seaside village that has attracted tourists from around the world.

Entire streets and neighborhoods are destroyed.

More than 5 thousand miles away, in Rochester, Massachusetts, Beth McCleod is worried about her mother-in-law, Linda Vaikeli.

No one has heard from Linda since the wildfires began.

“She has some health issues, and she doesn’t get around very well. She needs some assistance. I just hope someone was able to get to her and help her to evacuate,” McCleod said.

Beth tells me, Linda lives in an apartment in Lahaina that she shares with her husband, Sione Vaikeli.

He had a doctor’s appointment on the other side of the island before the fires started.

When he returned, the fires were raging, the streets were closed, and he could not return to his home.

“They are looking but we have not heard anything yet. And from what I’ve seen, it looks like their apartment complex is completely gone,” McCleod said.

Linda is the grandmother to Beth’s children.

With each passing hour, concern for her safety grows.

“We’re all working together to try to get answers and just put her name and face out there in case anyone has seen her,” Beth McCleod said.

This is a developing story. Check back for updates as more information becomes available.

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