WORLD NEWS

Local Family’s Home Damaged In Massive Beirut Explosion

Aug 5, 2020, 11:27 PM | Updated: 11:28 pm
BEIRUT, LEBANON - AUGUST 05: An aerial view of ruined structures at the port, damaged by an explosi...
BEIRUT, LEBANON - AUGUST 05: An aerial view of ruined structures at the port, damaged by an explosion a day earlier, on August 5, 2020 in Beirut, Lebanon. As of Wednesday, more than 100 people were confirmed dead, with thousands injured, when an explosion rocked the Lebanese capital. Officials said a waterfront warehouse storing explosive materials, reportedly 2,700 tons of ammonium nitrate, was the cause of the blast. (Photo by Haytham El Achkar/Getty Images)
(Photo by Haytham El Achkar/Getty Images)

SALT LAKE CITY, Utah – A Utah family’s home was damaged in the explosion that killed at least 135 people and injured thousands more in Beirut, Lebanon.

“It’s a lovely part of the world,” said Salah Lababidi, who was born in the capital city. “As much as we love Utah, we always feel a very strong affinity for Lebanon.”

Lababidi met his wife Veronica Boertee in Beirut and his parents live there. The couple also has a home there and lives there part-time.

They were devastated to see what’s become of it over the last year since they’ve been in Utah.

“These people have endured so much hardship over the years. So much suffering,” Lababidi said.

The country was already hurting from political turmoil, a banking crisis and the COVID-19 pandemic. Then on Tuesday, the world watched in horror online as a massive explosion destroyed buildings, killed many and injured thousands.

“That was devastating enough,” Lababidi said. “This is completely unexpected. Adding to the misery that already existed.”

“Streets that I would go to almost daily that are just rubble right now,” Boertee said. “It’s hard. A lot of times you just want to stop and cry, and you think it’s a bad dream.”

Their home is one of the countless damaged in the blast. Video shows shattered windows, turned over and broken furniture.

“It’s unlivable so we don’t know when we can go back,” Boertee said.

DEVASTATING: These satellite images show the site of yesterday's explosion in Beirut before and after. Lebanon leaders…

Posted by KSL 5 TV on Wednesday, August 5, 2020

She said their home was about a half-kilometer away from the port, where a warehouse had reportedly been holding 2,750 tons of ammonium nitrate for six years, despite repeated warnings by customs officials to dispose of it.

The irresponsibility of the authorities to allow something so dangerous to be in such proximity of a high number of civilians is unacceptable. Really unacceptable,” Lababidi said.

“It’s been a hard year,” Boertee said. “It’s been hard to watch everything this year, but this is the final blow. It can’t get worst.”

For their family, Beirut will always be one of their homes. And they’re hopeful the people will be able to rebuild soon.

“The Lebanese are extremely resilient,” Lababidi said. “I have no doubt within a couple days everyone will just bring out their brooms and their paints and they’ll just get to work to fix it up again.”

KSL 5 TV Live

Top Stories

World News

TOKYO, JAPAN - NOVEMBER 05: Pedestrians wearing face masks are reflected in an electronic screen sh...
YURI KAGEYAMA, AP Business Writer

Asian shares mostly decline echoing US slide on rate worries

Asian shares are mostly lower, reflecting pessimism over weakness on Wall Street as the squeeze by central banks around the world to curb inflation weighs on investor sentiment.
1 day ago
BRISTOL, ENGLAND - JANUARY 16:  In this photo illustration, One Pound coins are seen besides US Dol...
Jessie Yeung and Jonny Hallam, CNN Business

British pound plummets to record low against the dollar

The British pound fell to a new record all-time low against the US dollar of $1.035 on Monday, plummeting more than 4%.
1 day ago
KUPIANSK, UKRAINE - SEPTEMBER 24: Kraken Special Forces soldier Igor Shpatenko patrols the empty st...
JON GAMBRELL and ADAM SCHRECK, Associated Press

Russia’s call-up splits EU; Ukraine says it shows weakness

Ukraine's president says Russia’s rush to mobilize hundreds of thousands of recruits to staunch stinging losses is a tacit acknowledgment that its “army is not able to fight."
1 day ago
MEXICO CITY, MEXICO - OCTOBER 17: Miguel Diaz Canel, President of Cuba poses during a state visit t...
CRISTIANA MESQUITA, Associated Press

Cuba holds unusual vote on law allowing same-sex marriage

Cuba is holding a rare referendum on an unusually contentious law — a government-backed code that would allow same-sex couples to marry and adopt.
1 day ago
Kennedy Space Center on September 03, 2022 in Cape Canaveral, Florida. (Joe Raedle/Getty Images)...
MARCIA DUNN AP Aerospace Writer

EXPLAINER: Why is a NASA spacecraft crashing into an asteroid?

A NASA spacecraft is about to clobber a small, harmless asteroid millions of miles away. The spacecraft named Dart will zero in on the asteroid Monday, intent on slamming it head-on at 14,000 mph. The impact should be just enough to nudge the asteroid into a slightly tighter orbit around its companion space rock. It's the first save-the-world experiment of its kind. If successful, the test will demonstrate that if a killer asteroid ever heads our way, we'll stand a fighting chance. Dart blasted off on the $325 million mission last fall.
1 day ago
A soldier with Ukraine's Territorial Defense walks up to an abandoned home on June 29, 2022 in the ...
Katharina Krebs, Radina Gigova, Simone McCarthy and Sana Noor Haq, CNN

Protests, drafting mistakes and an exodus: Putin’s mobilization off to chaotic start

Russia's "partial mobilization" for its war in Ukraine is off to a chaotic start amid protests, drafting mistakes and an exodus of citizens fleeing Russia, as the Kremlin tightens rules around evading military orders.
1 day ago

Sponsored Articles

young woman with stickers on laptop computer...
Les Olson

7 ways print marketing materials can boost your business

Custom print marketing materials are a great way to leave an impression on clients or customers. Read for a few ideas to spread the word about your product or company.
young woman throwing clothes to organize a walk in closet...
Lighting Design

How to organize your walk-in closet | 7 easy tips to streamline your storage today

Read our tips to learn how to organize your walk-in closet for more storage space. These seven easy tips can help you get the most out of your space.
Types of Computer Malware and Examples...
PC Laptops

5 Nasty Types of Computer Malware and Examples | Everything You Need to Know to Keep Your Computer and Family Safe

Here are the different types of computer malware and examples that could potentially infect your computer.
tips how to quit smoking...

7 Tips How to Quit Smoking | Quitting Smoking Might be One of the Hardest Things You Ever Do but Here’s Where You Can Start

Quitting smoking cigarettes can be incredibly difficult. Here are 7 tips how to quit smoking to help you on your quitting journey.
Photo: Storyblocks...
Blue Stakes of Utah 811

Blue Stakes of Utah 811: 5 Reasons To Call 811 Before You Dig When Working in Your Yard

Call before you dig. Even at home, you could end up with serious injuries or broken utilities just because you didn't call Blue Stakes of Utah 811.
Days of...
Days of '47 Rodeo

TRIVIA: How well do you know your rodeo? Take this quiz before you go to the Days of ’47!

The Utah Days of ’47 Rodeo presented by Zions Bank is a one-of-a-kind Gold Medal Rodeo being held July 20-23, 25 at 7:30 PM. The Days of ’47 Rodeo How well do you know your rodeo trivia? Take the quiz to test your know-all before heading out to the Days of ’47 Rodeo at the […]
Local Family’s Home Damaged In Massive Beirut Explosion