Granite Quarry native OK in earthquake-ravaged Nepal
SALISBURY — Before she left on a missionary trip to Nepal, Kalyne Reid assured her grandmother there was nothing to worry about.
“I tried to deter her from going on this particular trip,” Maggie Reid recalled Tuesday. “She said, ‘Grammy, I don’t want you to worry about me. God talks to me all the time, and he wants me to go.'”
The answer satisfied Maggie Reid, and earlier this month, Kalyne arrived in Nepal as part of a Christian missionary group based out of Harrisburg, Pa. Then came the disaster.
An earthquake of 7.8 magnitude struck Saturday in Nepal, and as the country tries to recover, the death toll keeps mounting. It reached more than 4,400 people Tuesday. The United Nations says the earthquake has affected more than 8 million people — a quarter of the population in the Himalayan country.
Kalyne Reid, 23, is safe, and she has been in contact with her family, though there were some anxious hours until she could. She is daughter of Michelle and Lovie B. Reid Jr. of Granite Quarry, where she grew up, and she first reached her parents through a text message Sunday.
Her grandfather Lovie Reid Sr. said he finally slept for the first time Monday night after he and Maggie talked with Kalyne by telephone that same evening.
“Generally, I can shake things off and not worry about anything,” Reid said, “This one — I couldn’t get it off my mind.”
Kalyne’s missionary work has her stationed in Kathmandu, the capital city, which was about 50 miles from the earthquake’s epicenter.
Access to water and electricity are at a premium, and cell service is limited.
After the earthquake, authorities evacuated the place where Kalyne’s 14-member group was staying, and they had to spend a couple of nights in a field.
They have since been allowed to return to their quarters.
Kalyne had been feeling ill when she first arrived in Nepal almost three weeks ago, but she improved before becoming dehydrated and sick again after the earthquake. From what Michelle Reid understands, her daughter is feeling better after having received medication at the U.S. embassy.
Of all the things the family worried about in Kalyne’s going to Nepal, Michelle said, an earthquake was way down the list. A email chain has been established among the families of the missionaries, and when a parent hears news from one of the young adults in Nepal, it is shared with everyone else.
Television viewers watching the continuing news coverage in the United States probably know more about the extent of the disaster than people living and coping with the rubble, Lovie Reid Sr. said. Kalyne has had no access to radio or television since the earthquake.
‘They don’t really know what’s going on around them,” Maggie Reid said.
Kalyne was able to charge her telephone long enough so she could make the calls home, including one to her sister in Charlotte.
Maggie Reid said Kalyne described the earthquake as especially taking a toll on the city’s older buildings.
Kalyne Reid attended Sacred Heart Church in Salisbury, graduated high school from Cannon School in Concord and received her degree in nursing from East Carolina University.
When not on missions, she lives in Greensboro and works for Moses Cone Hospital.
At ECU, Michelle Reid said, her daughter started a dormitory Bible study that became large enough to be split into two groups. Her interest in missionary work also began in Greenville through a church there.
She became involved in Mission.Me and previously had been on trips to Honduras and Ghana. With the Harrisburg group, Youth with a Mission, she was supposed to stay in Nepal until the end of May, then move on to the Dominican Republic.
Before going to Nepal, Kalyne attended a three-month discipleship program in Harrisburg.
“We’re just blessed she’s OK,” Michelle Reid said.
In their telephone conversation, Kalyne told her grandmother that part of her wants to stay and do everything she can to help and another part wants to come home.
“My heart just dropped out,” Maggie Reid said of when she heard about Nepal’s earthquake. “I cried for days.”
Even though the family knows she is safe, Maggie Reid said she still wants Kalyne to come home.
Lovie Reid Sr. said his granddaughter is a jewel.
“I will not be satisfied until I see her walk through that door,” he said. “I’ll be a happy man then.”
Contact Mark Wineka at 704-797-4263, or email@example.com.