About 300 Americans quarantined on a cruise ship in Japan have been transported to two US military bases. One in California, the other one in Texas.
All passengers will have to go through another 14 days of quarantine. Among them are Ewa Beach residents Debbie and Eric Pagan.
Health officials say 14 of the transported passengers have contracted the coronavirus, but were not showing any symptoms.
The Pagans say they were never told that there are passengers with the virus who got on the plane. They say that’s another thing to add to their list of concerns, now that they’re spending their second round of being under quarantine.
They now have more space, staying in a two bedroom place with a large lanai. A temporary fence surrounds the buildings where passengers are staying, and guards are always around.
“We got the little military jeep out there, security guys out there,” said Eric Pagan.
They describe the ordeal of getting off the ship as a nightmare. They got on one of about 10 buses where they waited three and a half hours before leaving.
It took just as long to get off the bus and onto the plane, and the bus ride itself was only about 20 minutes. One passenger had an anxiety attack and they helped calm him down.
“He had to get off that bus and he was planning to just say, forget all of it, I’m staying, I’m not gonna do this,” said Debbie.
“Yeah, he wanted to get back on the ship. He said they can have my passport,” said Eric.
They arrived at Travis Air Force base at 4:30 a.m. California time, unaware that there were 14 passengers with coronavirus who were also transported.
“That’s news, I mean,” said Eric.
“We didn’t know that there was people with the virus because you know how things change,” said Debbie.
And as things keep changing, they’re not fully convinced that they’ll be able to come home after 14 days. They’ve already received letters saying it could take longer.
“I’ve seen one part, they’re talking about after the 14 days, they want to hold like a 72-hour clause in there,” said Eric.
They want nothing more than to be able to come home. Both have jobs they need to get back to, along with their family. Not the least of which is their 11-year-old Maltese, Snowball.
“He’s like, they’ve abandoned me. I knew it, someday,” said Debbie.
“He better not disown us,” said Eric.
When asked if they made the right decision by getting off the ship, they said they’re not sure. They’ll wait and see after this whole ordeal is over.