The 2017 hurricane season is shaping up to be the most destructive since Sandy struck the Mid-Atlantic and Northeast in 2012. Less than two weeks after Harvey dropped a record 51 inches of rain across Texas and neighboring states, Hurricane Irma laid waste to Caribbean islands overnight Wednesday and is heading toward south Florida.
A Hurricane Harvey telethon scheduled for Tuesday has been expanded to include victims of Irma, but celebrities are keeping those in the affected areas in their thoughts and looking for other ways to help.
The singer told her Floridian followers to evacuate immediately. To those asked to leave, “don’t risk it,” she wrote. “board up your homes and get out.”
The country singer, who owned a home on St. John, one of the U.S.Virgin Islands, for several years, said his only basis for comparison is a war zone.
“I’ve never been in a war, but the devastation, the people’s faces in a place I know by heart have left me feeling hopeless,” he wrote in an essay posted to Twitter Thursday. “Those lives have changed and will never be the same. Those small islands are hard to get to and they rely on each other to get through what life hands them. For all of them, though, they’ve been where I’ve leaned for emotional and creative support for 15 years because they are so generous.”
Chesney stressed, “This is unlike anything they’ve ever seen, from St. Maartens to Puerto Rico and then the Caribbean on to Key West.”
He added that he was canvassing for ideas on the most constructive ways to help and said he’d be calling on his fan base.
“I know the No Shoes Nation is mighty,” he wrote. “They’ve dug in before and made a difference. I have a feeling once we have our plans in place, they’ll be there again.”
The British monarch, who is the sovereign of several Commonwealth member nations in the Caribbean (including Antigua and Barbuda, the Bahamas, Barbados and St. Lucia), said in a statement, “Prince Philip and I have been shocked and saddened by the reports of the devastation caused by Hurricane Irma. Our thoughts and prayers are with all those whose homes and livelihoods have been destroyed or adversely affected by this terrible storm.”
She continued, “Please convey my gratitude and good wishes to members of the emergency services and to those who are working on the rescue effort at this very difficult time for you all.”
Robert De Niro
The actor, who is planning to help rebuild Barbuda and last year announced plans to create a resort there, released a statement about the severe destruction in the small Caribbean island.
“We are beyond saddened to learn of the devastation in Barbuda caused from Hurricane Irma and look forward to working with the Paradise Found Nobu Resort team, the Barbuda Council, GOAB and the entire Barbuda community to successfully rebuild what nature has taken away from us.”