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Chico State's independent student newspaper

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The Orion

Candlelit vigil held for Nepal victims

Chico State third year Sylvia Dorghalli places her candle to spell out Nepal outside of Siskiyou Hall

Former Peace Corps member Lee Altier, with the help of many other faculty members, put together an information gathering about the earthquake in Nepal.

Speakers included Altier, Colleen Hatfield, Sanjay Dev and Badri Ghimire.

Dev, a Nepal native, shared stories of the people through such a tough time. Many ancient buildings were destroyed in the earthquake, but everyone’s first reaction was to save those who were trapped.

“They can take away the beautiful structures,” Dev said. “But they can’t take away the heart of Nepal.”

The buildings in Nepal were not built with support. They are strictly made from crushed stones and brick, so a little shake could knock them down, let alone a 7.8 earthquake.

Ghimire is also a native of Nepal. His village was at the epicenter of the quake. Everything in his village was destroyed. When Ghimire heard of the quake, he was worried for his family that was still there.

“My whole family survived,” Ghimire said. “It was God’s grace, I believe.”

Hatfield presented ways to help Nepal through donation of money, time and research. One of the agencies that Hatfield promoted was Dev’s own GoFundMe. Dev’s site, Save My Nepal, has raised over $8,000 already.

The most difficult thing about the rescue aid is that Nepal has many hills and mountains. It makes it hard to land even helicopters.

Nepal also had continuous aftershocks weeks after the original earthquake. Aftershocks ranging from 4.0 to 5.0, making it again impossible for any rescue aid to land.

Mount Everest, the tallest mountain in the world was also affected, even though it rest a good distance from the epicenter. Granted, the size of Nepal is roughly the same size as Tennessee.

Mount Everest’s avalanche killed 17 and injured 37. One of the climbers killed was google engineer, Dan Fredinburg.

The informational meeting concluded with a room packed with students, faculty and family members of the speakers. The was Chai and snacks outside, while candles were passed out.

Everyone socialized and ate while they waited for further instructions. Then everyone gathered outside.

The event ended in a candlelit vigil where everyone circled up and praised “Jai Nepal” Then everyone placed their candles to spell out Nepal.

Hatfield’s fear is that the news isn’t covering the suffering of Nepal anymore because it’s not the latest breaking news. But she wants everyone to remember Nepal

“Let’s not forget them.” Hatfield said.

Brittany McClintock can be reached at [email protected] or @theorion_news on Twitter.

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Brittany Mcclintock, Staff Writer

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