Springfield man flies to Haiti to search for wife in Hurricane Matthew's wake

Springfield man flies to Haiti to search for wife in Hurricane Matthew's wake
Posted at 10:10 AM, Oct 06, 2016
and last updated 2016-10-06 10:19:04-04

SPRINGFIELD, Ohio -- A Springfield man is boarding a plane Thursday headed for Haiti in the wake of Hurricane Matthew to find his wife after not hearing from her since early Wednesday morning.

Jacob Crabtree told WCPO news partner WHIO that Chelsey Crabtree’s last text messages to him around 4 a.m. Wednesday were that the storm’s strength was increasing and that “I didn’t expect this noise.”

The woman and her four family members have been on a mission trip in a remote part of the country for about a week before Hurricane Matthew struck the island Tuesday and early Wednesday. In 2010, she was stuck on the island when an earthquake hit. It took four days for her to make contact with her family after that calamity.

Video from ABC News in the player below shows the devastation Hurricane Matthew left in Jeremie, Haiti, the city where Crabtree's wife and family members were staying.

ABC Breaking News | Latest News Videos

The family makes several visits to Haiti each year, he said, to help out at orphanages and drill water wells for their nonprofit organization, Living Water for Haiti.

"As a husband and a father and I know Jake feels the same way, I can't sit and wait for the news another day," a post reads on Living Water for Haiti's Facebook page. "If we don't get on a plane tomorrow and get on the small plane on Friday morning then we could be into next week before we could get out to Jeremie," 

It could be multiple days before he can reach her again, Crabtree said. His support system in Springfield has been helpful, he said, but he is obviously worried for his wife and her family.