Former Hawaii residents brave Florence

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KHON2 checked in with several former Hawaii residents who now live in the Carolina’s, and found out many have decided to brave the storm instead of evacuating.

Haleiwa native Chelle Bishop Losano moved to Wilmington in 1993. She’s been through three major hurricanes, including Iwa here in Hawaii. 

“This is definitely up there with the worst ones we’ve been through, damage wise, and it’s lengthy,” Bishop Losano said. 

KHON2 spoke to Biship Losano around 6 p.m. EST. “We’ve had a few tornadoes come through, we’ve had trees fall, fences flying, power lines are down, there’s trees all over the road.”

Another former Oahu resident lives nearby. 

“[It] made landfall around 7 a.m. Friday, and [we] lost power about 1 a.m Friday,” Wilmington resident Andrew Price said. 

“There’s some gusts coming through right now actually and the only damage to our house is this tree right here,” he said, as he shows us the downed tree in his backyard. 

Both tell KHON2 they aren’t expecting power again for a week. 

“We do have a generator but we don’t know how long we’re going to be without power. There was no gas left, so we were only able to get one thing of gas. So we’re trying to run that very rarely,” Bishop Losano said. 

“I have enough food for about a week and a half or so, and we have plenty of water,” Price said. “[We have the] generator to run the water pumps and run the air conditioning and the RV if it gets warm, we’ll jump in RV and sleep in there. We have a little compound here, so we’ll be good.”

Bishop Losano said she decided to stay instead of evacuate because she didn’t know when she’d be able to return home. 

“You want to evacuate because you know you might be safer somewhere else but then there’s also the days, weeks, possibly months that you won’t be able to get back into the roads, or back to the house or what you’re going to come back to,” she said. 

“Most of my friends did evacuate, they played it safe. I was hoping it would weaken as it came on shore like it did,” Price said. 

In Charleston County, S.C., a Maui family is just settling in to the home they bought in June.

“We’re not sure what to expect with the rain because we haven’t been here that long ,” she said. “We don’t know what our area is going to be able to hold, so that’s the biggest concern.”

She says schools have been closed since Tuesday, and has no idea when they’ll open again.

She adds there’s no postal service, banks are closed, even Walmart is closed. 

She says there’s one benefit to being on the mainland when a big storm is approaching. 

“When Florence was a Category 4, when you were like ‘whoa, this is a 4,’ we had the option to leave. On Maui, unless you got a flight out in plenty of time, you didn’t have a lot of time,” Bormet said. 

“To have the option to go is pretty reassuring to know you have another plan.”

All three residents boarded up their windows, have generators, and plenty of food and water, and spam. 

“We were doing running down the Costco non-perishable aisle and the boys grabbed Vienna sausage and Spam,” Bormet says laughing. “They were fully stocked.”

“There’s always a lot of Spam at places here. Yes, it’s not like back there, (it’s) different here,” Bishop Losano also said laughing. 

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