Utahns living on Maui recount escaping wildfire, pleading for help for locals

Aug 10, 2023, 11:14 PM | Updated: Aug 13, 2023, 9:48 am

LAHAINA, Maui – Three Utahns living on Maui are recounting the moments they fled the devastating fire. They escaped with their lives, but now their focus turns to the many locals who have lost everything.

“They need the support, they need the prayers, they need the help, the love. They just need all of the positivity that you can give them,” said Farmington native, Alexa Pozzuoli.

Pozzuoli lives and works in Lahaina. The home she rents burned down along with her place of employment along Front Street. She says her loss is nothing compared to what locals have lost.

“I’m not concerned about myself. I am just hoping and praying that everyone that has family missing and has lost everything, get all that they can and have everyone’s prayers go towards them,” Pozzuoli said.

On Tuesday, Pozzuoli along with Abby Ketchum from South Jordan and Morgyn Hill from Ogden fled the fire in Lahaina. They said the sky filled with thick black smoke as they drove away from the historic town.

“It was just terrifying, and it was bumper to bumper. There was just nothing we could do, we weren’t moving and people were panicking, running out of their car going to the beach, driving their car on the sidewalk,” the group said.

They thankfully found shelter at a friends apartment in Kihei. They are now spending time at shelters helping those in need, handing our donations and food.

“We would get them water, we would get them food. We would give them prepackaged meals for every single member of the family,” Pozzuoli said.

They want Utahns to understand the severity of the situation and hope by sharing their experience, others will consider donating to the people of Maui.

“Help them rebuild their lives, and make sure that they get to keep their land and keep one belongs to them,” Pozzuoli said.  “They’ve lost their businesses, they have lost their homes. They have lost family members. They have nothing left.”


KSL 5 TV Live

Local News

Traffic moves on I-15 in Salt Lake City on Thursday, May 18, 2023. (Spenser Heaps, Deseret News)...

Karah Brackin

UDOT warns of busy roads ahead of Memorial Day weekend

Memorial Day weekend is seeing traffic pick up as Utahns get out of school, clock out of work, and fill up the gas tank.

30 minutes ago

(Copper Mountain Middle School)...

Eliza Pace

Utah seventh grader helps friend cross the finish line of school race

A seventh grader is being praised for helping his friend cross the finish line at their school race.

2 hours ago

A still from "Super/Man: The Christopher Reeve Story" by Ian Bonhãte and Peter Ettedgui, an offici...


Sundance film ‘Super/Man: The Christopher Reeve Story’ gets U.S. theatrical release

Sundance film "Super/Man: The Christopher Reeve Story" will get a special-even theatrical release in the U.S.

3 hours ago

FILE PHOTO of handcuffs and gavel...

Eliza Pace

Utah man accused of kidnapping 13-year-old Arizona girl

A man was taken into custody on Thursday on suspicion of kidnapping a 13-year-old girl.

4 hours ago

Axel Thomas Peterson and his father Matthew Peterson placing flags on veteran graves at the Larkin ...

Kiersten Nunez

Honoring veterans: 3,000 flags placed by youth volunteers

In a heartfelt tribute to the men and women who have served the country, more than 200 youth volunteers from around the Salt Lake Valley gathered to honor military veterans ahead of Memorial Day.

15 hours ago

Joan Eccles and her mother were gifted matching engraved charms. Once lost, Eccles has found the mi...

Andrew Adams

St. George family believes they found long lost charm on eBay

A St. George woman was reunited with a lost family charm in an unexpected place on the internet.

15 hours ago

Sponsored Articles

Electrician repairing ceiling fan with lamps indoors...

Lighting Design

Stay cool this summer with ceiling fans

When used correctly, ceiling fans help circulate cool and warm air. They can also help you save on utilities.

Side view at diverse group of children sitting in row at school classroom and using laptops...

PC Laptops

5 Internet Safety Tips for Kids

Read these tips about internet safety for kids so that your children can use this tool for learning and discovery in positive ways.

Women hold card for scanning key card to access Photocopier Security system concept...

Les Olson

Why Printer Security Should Be Top of Mind for Your Business

Connected printers have vulnerable endpoints that are an easy target for cyber thieves. Protect your business with these tips.

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.

Utahns living on Maui recount escaping wildfire, pleading for help for locals