Pecos Family Reunited With Loved Ones from Japan

Nick Lawton
NewsWest 9

MIDLAND -Emotions ran high at Midland International Airport on Friday night.

One Pecos family gathered and embraced their loved ones returning from earthquake and tsunami-stricken Japan, thankful to put this time of fear and uncertainty behind them and be a family again, together.

NewsWest 9 viewer Gretchen Lara sent us an E-mail about the homecoming for her sister, Kristi Rodriguez, and her two boys.

They had been living in Japan for a year-and-a-half while Kristi's husband in the Navy, Michael Rodriguez, also a former NewsWest 9 employee, was stationed at a base in Atsugi in the Kanagawa Prefecture outside Tokyo.

He's now stationed in Guam.

Family and friends gathered to embrace Kristi and her sons at the airport.

Kristi described how they were evacuated from the base because of radiation danger and described how traumatic it was experiencing the earthquake and having all contact with their family lost.

A week after the earthquake and tsunami hit on March 11th, Kristi lost contact with her family, but was able to get a message through Facebook that she and the boys were alright.

Coming back home to West Texas made emotions run high for both Kristi and her family.

"I'm overwhelmed and overjoyed at the same time," Gretchen Lara, Kristi's sister, said. "I'm just glad she's on U.S. grounds and coming home safe."

"When the earthquake hit, we couldn't make calls or anything," Kristi said "I couldn't even get a hold of my children, I was working. Keep Japan in your prayers and if anyone can donate to the Japan Red Cross, that would be greatly appreciated. They're great people out there."

The family told NewsWest 9 they are overjoyed to have Kristi and her sons back home and their hearts go out to all those who have lost loved ones in the tsunami.

If you'd like to donate to the relief efforts in Japan, we've posted the link to the Red Cross under News Links.