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O.C. missionaries return after Mexicali quake

April 9, 2010 12:00:00 AM PDT
A group of Orange County missionaries are back home after surviving Sunday's magnitude 7.2 earthquake in Mexicali. The young missionaries are from Rose Drive Friends Church in Yorba Linda and were in Mexicali when the quake struck on Easter Sunday. Two people were killed in the quake.

Tears and smiles were presents as family members welcomed the missionaries home Friday. Some of the missionaries were on the road when the earthquake hit.

"We thought it was a really, really strong wind so our car was swerving and it was kind of crazy," said member Danae Lane.

Others were in church when the earth shook.

"All of sudden one shake happened and then all of a sudden everything started moving in a wave. Then we started getting older people out of the church and we got in the middle of the street and we all banded hands and just kneeled to the ground," said Paul O'Loughlin.

Every Easter, nearly one hundred young people travel to Baja California to carry out service projects and help minister to families and churches. This year the crisis increased the importance of their mission.

"Some of the groups got involved doing a little bit of cleanup, but honestly it was an extension of kinds of things they were prepared to do all along," said Rose Drive Friends Church Pastor Jim LeShana.

An hour after the quake, worried parents back year learned through text messages everyone was okay. The young people chose to stay to help comfort those in need.

Without having access to showers or the comforts of home, there's relief to be back in Orange County and an increased appreciation of what they have.


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