LOCAL NEWS

Pleasant Grove business owner among those collecting goods and supplies for Tonga

Jan 19, 2022, 10:15 PM | Updated: Jun 8, 2022, 6:21 pm

PLEASANT GROVE, Utah — A business owner was among those Wednesday trying to gather goods and supplies for the people of Tonga following a devastating tsunami spawned by a volcanic eruption.

At the Fresh Fade Away Barbershop, Nafe Latu had already amassed numerous bags of rice and cereal, jars of peanut butter and other supplies donated from the community.

“It’s just crazy to me,” Latu told KSL 5. “I didn’t expect a lot of love from a lot of people but I’m just grateful.”

Since the eruption, Latu had not heard from family members over the past 5 days.

“The last conversation I had with my brother was Friday night here, which was Saturday on the island,” Latu said. “While we were talking, he just told me it was raining with rocks—it was from the volcano erupting—and that was the last conversation we had. The phone cut off there and that was it. That was the last thing I heard from him.”

Latu said he didn’t know what had happened.

“That was the scary part—just knowing that was the last thing I heard from him,” Latu said.

Communication between Tonga and the U.S. have been limited since the tsunami due to an important undersea cable going down in the aftermath of the eruption.

Earlier Wednesday, Latu said he heard he could dial Tonga and attempted to reach his brother. Though the call rang through, nobody answered.

“So, tonight I got a phone call,” Latu smiled. “I was crossing my fingers like ‘it has to be him, it has to be him calling’ and I answered and it was him. (I) got to speak with him for 6 minutes.”

In that time, Latu said his brother described the devastation along the coastline.

“The beach next to our house—he just said it’s ‘demolished,’” Latu said.

Latu said he was also told locals were struggling to find access to water and were in need of food.

He was glad he had already begun to collect some of the essentials. Latu said he would continue to collect non-perishable food and other supplies at the barbershop through Jan. 27, and anyone interested in donating could call the shop at 801-919-9818 or bring donations there.

For now, Latu said he is relieved to hear his brother is surviving.

“For me, I’m just glad that I got to hear from him,” Latu nodded.

KSL 5 TV Live

Local News

The Utah Senate on March 1, 2024....

Lindsay Aerts

Final day of 2024 legislative session saw billions in funding and a move to ban pride flags

The final day of Utah’s 2024 legislature saw over 100 bills passed, involving funding for downtown, social media restrictions for minors, and a $29.4 billion budget.

20 minutes ago

Cache County Clerk David Benson addresses a crowd regarding election law violations. (Mike Anderson...

Mike Anderson

Cache County Clerk addresses office election law violations

Cache County Clerk David Benson answered questions from the media and local voters about findings of numerous election law violations in his office.

1 hour ago

Pair of handcuffs on a black bacthroom...

Alexander Campbell

Washington County man calls police on self, gets arrested for stolen firearms

A teenager is off the streets after calling in to St. George Police and giving them his approximate location Friday, leading to a guns-drawn arrest.

2 hours ago

Two victims in a Hit-and-run in Sugarhouse speak to KSL News on Friday. (Emma Benson, KSL News)...

Emma Benson

Sugarhouse hit and run victims speak out

Two Sugarhouse women are speaking out after they were involved in a hit-and-run.

4 hours ago

Toyota passenger car that was involved in a fatal crash on Friday. (Utah Highway Patrol)...

Alexander Campbell

South Jordan crash results in one fatality, closes I-15 on ramp

Interstate 15 is closed at 11400 South while Utah Highway Patrol investigates a fatal crash on Friday.

4 hours ago

SLCPD officers pulling the the man off the parking garage ledge. (The Salt Lake City Police Departm...

Alex Cabrero

Body cam video shows police officers save man’s life during mental health crisis

Many people who live or work in downtown Salt Lake City often have very normal days. 

5 hours ago

Sponsored Articles

Modern chandelier hanging from a white slanted ceiling with windows in the backgruond...

Lighting Design

Light Up Your Home With These Top Lighting Trends for 2024

Check out the latest lighting design trends for 2024 and tips on how you can incorporate them into your home.

Technician woman fixing hardware of desktop computer. Close up....

PC Laptops

Tips for Hassle-Free Computer Repairs

Experiencing a glitch in your computer can be frustrating, but with these tips you can have your computer repaired without the stress.

Close up of finger on keyboard button with number 11 logo...

PC Laptops

7 Reasons Why You Should Upgrade Your Laptop to Windows 11

Explore the benefits of upgrading to Windows 11 for a smoother, more secure, and feature-packed computing experience.

Stylish room interior with beautiful Christmas tree and decorative fireplace...

Lighting Design

Create a Festive Home with Our Easy-to-Follow Holiday Prep Guide

Get ready for festive celebrations! Discover expert tips to prepare your home for the holidays, creating a warm and welcoming atmosphere for unforgettable moments.

Battery low message on mobile device screen. Internet and technology concept...

PC Laptops

9 Tips to Get More Power Out of Your Laptop Battery

Get more power out of your laptop battery and help it last longer by implementing some of these tips from our guide.

Users display warnings about the use of artificial intelligence (AI), access to malicious software ...

Les Olson

How to Stay Safe from Cybersecurity Threats

Read our tips for reading for how to respond to rising cybersecurity threats in 2023 and beyond to keep yourself and your company safe.

Pleasant Grove business owner among those collecting goods and supplies for Tonga