Salisbury native OK after New York explosion

Published 12:10 am Monday, September 19, 2016

By Amanda Raymond

SALISBURY — A family in Salisbury is grateful their daughter is safe after learning she was near an explosion that occurred in a New York City neighborhood on Saturday night.

Dr. Jim Stringfield, dean of the Goodman School of Education at Catawba College, has a daughter who lives in Manhattan. His wife Donna watched news of the explosion on CNN and urged Stringfield to call their daughter Sarah to make sure she was OK.

Stringfield said he was not too worried at first. New York City is a big city so he thought she might not have been anywhere near the blast that injured 29 people.

When Stringfield called Sarah, she did not answer at first. She called back and told Stringfield that she and some friends were walking through the Chelsea neighborhood when she “heard a very large explosion.”

She told Stringfield that she and her friends were about 15 feet away.

Stringfield said he has not talked with Sarah extensively, but he knows she was taken to NYU Hospital and later released without serious injuries.

“I could tell from her voice that she was OK,” Stringfield said.

CNN reports that FBI investigators were still gathering evidence Sunday from the scene of the bombing.

Saturday’s explosion occurred at 23rd Street and 6th Avenue in the Chelsea neighborhood of Manhattan at about 8:30 p.m.

Investigators believe it was caused by an explosive device in or near a dumpster, according to CNN.

There was also a pressure cooker found at 27th Street with protruding wiring connected to a cell phone with duct tape. The pressure cooker was removed from the area.

Governor Andrew Cuomo told reporters that the explosion was “obviously an act of terrorism.” He also said there was no evidence pointing to international terrorists.

Additional New York State Police officers and National Guard troops were deployed to bus terminals, subway stations and airports to increase safety.

Stringfield said he was grateful that his daughter was not seriously hurt.

“We always have to be grateful for every day the good Lord gives us,” he said.

Contact reporter Amanda Raymond at 704-797-4222.