PORT ROYAL, S.C. (WSAV) — Wildfires have burned through Maui, turning everything in its path into ash. More than 100 people have been killed in the flames and 1,000 are still missing.
Homes and businesses have been completely destroyed, uprooting families and putting people’s lives on pause.
“Right now it’s such universal devastation and I can’t even imagine,” said Dr. Marikay Campbell, Head Veterinarian at the Port Royal Veterinary Hospital.
From the Lowcountry to Hawaii, the Port Royal Veterinary Hospital is offering work and a place to stay for veterinarians impacted by the historic Maui fires.
“These people lost everything,” said Shelia Ellis, one of the co-owners of Port Royal Veterinary Hospital. “For the people in Maui, we just wanted to do what we could to help them out.”
“It was the community that helped us to be able to reopen,” Campbell added. “And if we can help to do that for somebody else that’s what we want. We want to return the favor or pay it forward however you want to look at it but if we can help somebody get through this that’s our goal.”
In the middle of the night, after Hurricane Elsa made landfall on the Carolina coast in 2021, the Port Royal Veterinary Hospital staff rushed to get the animals under their care to safety after a tornado warning was issued. In the morning, their hospital as they knew it was gone.
“The entire floor, we were about ankle deep in water because once the trees came through, they came through the roof, the attic and all the way down to the first floor in the surgery suite,” Campbell said.
Although the tornado came after a named hurricane, their insurance company required them to pay out a $100,000 deductible.
“We were completely destroyed by a tornado and our community banded together to get back on our feet,” said Ellis.
“If we could offer something to help someone out, to give them a soft place to land, including a place to stay and a job temporarily,” said Ellis.
If you know anyone who is a licensed veterinarian or vet technician who was impacted by the fires, contact email@example.com or call 843-263-2491.