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Houston's Puerto Rican community worried as Hurricane Fiona devastates the island

It's a tight-knit community. Some Puerto Ricans from Houston are on the island to help in the relief effort.

HOUSTON — Houston is home to a large population of Puerto Rican people, many of whom still have family on the island as it's being devastated by Hurricane Fiona.

It's a tight-knit community. Some Puerto Ricans from Houston are on the island to help in the relief effort.

One couple who owns a local business here in Houston told KHOU 11 they're having flashbacks to Hurricane Maria, which devastated the island nearly five years ago.

RELATED: Hurricane Fiona devastates Puerto Rico almost exactly 5 years after Maria

While Hurricane Fiona may leave the island within the next day or so, the people of Puerto Rico still have to pick up the aftermath.

Cristina Carrion runs a Puerto Rican grocery store in Houston. She moved from the island seven years ago. The majority of her family is still in Puerto Rico.

“It’s been very nerve-wracking, so we’ve been tracking it as well with them," she said. "Just asking how they are.” 

Carrion says her social media feed has been overtaken by pictures and videos of Hurricane Fiona turning roads into rivers.

RELATED: Puerto Rico completely without power from Hurricane Fiona

"It reminds me a lot of when Maria hit," she said. “We know that they’re going to struggle. They’re going to struggle a lot. Things are not going to be the same in a while.” 

In Puerto Rico, Pastor Angelica Ortega with nonprofit NACC Disaster Services was out in the middle of the storm with her husband, Pastor Jose Ortega.

“We were pretty much just checking up on a lot of the area that we know closely," she said. “The flash flooding and there's no power so I think the flooding is probably the worst.” 

Angelica and her husband say the eye of the storm just passed through the area they were in about an hour before they spoke with us.

Meanwhile, Carrion is praying that Hurricane Fiona leaves soon, and help comes even sooner.

“We’re not going to make a solution out of a hashtag," she said. "They are actually going to need help out there.” 

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