There are no words to describe the depths of our sorrow and loss.
We believe that our girls, Bailey Sage Meola, and Sydney Jo Schumacher, perished during the earthquake and catastrophic landslide in the Langtang region of Nepal. When Sydney’s brothers, Will and Paul, searched the entirety of the trek, and saw the immense and unfathomable destruction and devastation, it became clear that there was no chance our girls had survived. Although our strong desire has been to hear final confirmation from the US Embassy, and to receive our beloved girls’ remains, we haven’t, and may never.
We have been profoundly moved by the support and love we have received from near and from far, far away. You have all had your part in helping us move through these dark days. Thank you.
The Meola Brown Family
The Schumacher Family
It is with great sadness that I share this news we received from the SAR Dogs Nepal as to the status of the Langtang Landslide Recovery Mission. It seems the likelihood of any type of recovery in the area of Langtang is now impossible as a result of the second earthquake.
News received states;
The second quake has caused more slides and damages in and around the Gosaikunda-Langtang-Helambu region.
Horrible disfigured mountain slopes have caused huge countless landslides yesterday and entire villages are now buried.
Langtang Village is now buried under a further 300 metres high and 600 meters wide hill of debris – a new smaller mountain of its own inside the valley.
Langtang Valley is vanishing slowly from the map. The pressure by the Indian sub continental drift on the two mountain ranges at both the sides of the west to east situated canyon is absolutely immeasurable”.
We questioned the possibility of proceeding with a search and recovery effort for the areas of Kyangin Gompa, Thangsyap and Ghora Tabel – the last know location of many other loved ones still missing.
The response from SAR Dogs Nepal came as follows;
“It is out of the question that the search & recovery mission into Langtang Canyon (Valley) will resume. The Army has now taken every living human out, the place is empty. The army and local administration have declared it a restricted area, entering is not possible anymore.
There have been 3 more landslides on top of that first landslide and the entire area is still shaking and moving continuously.
This is the grim reality we face now. Also, the Monsoon is now coming in 15-20 days – this will cause serial landslides, the worse is still to come…”
It seems clear despite our hope to perhaps find someone alive in the Langtang region, to perhaps recover maybe at least one more person for one family, no amount of will can change this harsh reality, and I am so very sorry. Sorry for the young backpackers and trekkers, the beautiful people of the villages who thrived on this industry and the families across the world in pain.
If I can be of any assistance to family, please feel free to contact me.
Vishal Rishi Sharma : I would like to inform you that Airport is now open. It was closed only for a while. Flights are now functional. Also everything in Kathmandu is safe. Few casualties have been reported but situation is under control and devastation is not that huge. ########### Khaled Habash Portland, ME, United States · Hello Everyone! I wanted to update everyone. My sister, Yasmine Habash and Reid Harris, along with ALL locals, have been forced to evacuate from the Langtang Area due to multiple avalanches. The weather is/was terrible and is NOT a place to be. They did not have luck finding our mother Dawn Habash although giving up was not an option until the forced evacuation. I want to thank the people from this page and families around the world for all help, support, love and hope that has allowed us to get through the past 2 weeks. We are heartbroken and exhausted yet truly feel everyone right next to us. My heart is with your heart. Dawn Habash was on the Tamang Heritage Trek in Nepal at the time of the earthquake. ##########Here is a message from Leonie Elsner’s family: Nina Stechmann has been identified as one of the deceased in Langtang. Her friend, Leonie Elsner, is still missing. Please let everyone know that we appreciate all the help and support, organizing and staying in touch. It is such a hard time for everyone, especially those who do not know anything about their still missing ones and the ones who lost their beloved, and especially for the Nepalese people who lost everything. Langtang Missing/Found People https://www.facebook.com/groups/1618410661725880/ http://missingperson.gov.np/Nepal-Police/search-persons.php The Russian Embassy in #Nepal has confirmed the deaths of two young diplomats, Alexei Lipeev and Maria Yakovleva, after their bodies were discovered in the mountain village of Langtang. 22 Nepalese dead body evacuated from Langtang, Rasuwa By Mahabirgan(ranger) 3 unidentified dead evacuated from Langtang Embassies are kindly requested to coordinate. Status: Teaching Hospital, Maharajgunj, Kathmandu he body of award-wining local DJ Sai Jaya Raj Anthony, who has been missing since the devastating Nepal earthquake, may have been found. The authorities have found a body with Anthony’s passport in Langtang Valley, one of the worst-hit mountain villages, about 130km north of Kathmandu. Sai Maya Raj Anthony M 21 Malysia A34235325 Dead evacuated from Langtang Maybe someone did say it already but spanish news just confirm the dead of Roser Palau. Mi más sentido pésame. D.E.P. Roser. I’m still waiting to hear from my brother Tyronne white 44 from Australia trekking alone. He was last seen at langtang and had a chat with another guy and i quote: I saw him on April 23rd. He was either going to stay in Langtang that day or make it up slightly higher. He was going up. We chatted briefly at the spot I was having lunch (in Langtang). Higher up to Kyanjin gompa and onto the glacier most likely and that Tyronne looked fine and ready to go! So if anyone at anytime has seen Tyronne or has any info at all regarding him please contact me personally through email at email@example.com Facebook private message brepil whikim or call +610410928776. Thank you very much. — with Tyronne White.
Langtang Missing People (68) Last Updated 5.5.15 at 4:07 a.m. PST (Name, Age, Nationality, and Best Guess of Last Location) https://docs.google.com/document/d/1Q62U7oP9joNaPluo2aAWJGmRxeUxqj-v8XCrkTVQ3YQ/edit?pli=1 Please contact the following numbers for more details on missing foreigners. 1. Rikesh Tandukar — Police Inspector Contact: 1144 (Toll free) Email: firstname.lastname@example.org 2. Sarad Pradhand — Media Consultant, NTB Contact: 9851077385 Email: email@example.com Thanks TAAN Media Center Sundar Tiwari Dear All : I’m sorry this links may bring bad news for someone and also good for some. Please see the links from Nepal Police.http://nepalpolice.gov.np/images/crisis-detail-2072-01-18/foreigner-2072-01-18.pdf Nepal Quake: Langtang Missing/Found Person Database https://docs.google.com/spreadsheets/d/1emNUSYvk0fo1BqaDAzIzDQXFoHGYm9QGcFPW8SCnORg/htmlview?pli=1&sle=true# April 25.2015 DCnepal भुकम्पमा पुरिएर मृत्यु भएका यि साना बालकको लास निकालिंदै Report on situation in Langtang, April 28, from Austin Lord. “Some information about the effects of the earthquake in the Langtang Valley, as well as the rest of Rasuwa: The village of Langtang was the site of the largest single catastrophe, as the entirety of village was completely buried by an avalanche that came from thousands of feet above on the southern slopes of Langtang Lirung and Langtang II. Smaller settlements on the outskirts of Langtang, such as Chyamki, Thangsyap, and Mundu were also buried. It is impossible to determine exactly how many people died there, but the estimate is perhaps over 300 people in total. The handful of survivors, roughly twelve locals and two foreigners, walked down to Ghodatabela below after spending the night of the 25th in a cave – thus there is no one at Langtang itself. This avalanche is perhaps 2-3 kilometers wide, and is obstructing movement within the upper valley corridor. Currently two large groups are stranded above and below (due to several intensive and recurring landslides in the steep sections between Ghodatabela and Lama Hotel). Above, at Kyangjin Gompa, there were reportedly fewer casualties (perhaps 5-10) yet many injured. Most of the injured have been evacuated via helicopter and there is an army medic team in place. Yet, currently, the problem is one of food shortage and illness. I have heard that the majority of the settlement, including the gompa, is remarkably intact. There is a smaller group of about 30-40 at the settlement of Sindum, about 4km below Kyangjin and closer to Langtang. This group has excavated several bodies from the major avalanche zone. They have also evacuated many of the injured, but are facing severe food shortages and illness (hopefully remedied by Nepal Army reinforcements and supplies on the evening of the 27th. Above Kyangjin Gompa, there were several smaller groups and climbing teams exploring the Upper Langtang valley, in a very high avalanche risk zone – I do not have good information on these groups, so please contact the respective embassies to determine who has been accounted for and evacuated via Kyangjim. As of the evening of April 27th, there was perhaps 120-140 people remaining above Langtang who need to be evacuated. Below, at Ghodatabela (where I was located during the earthquake for roughly 55 hours following the event) several large landslides were triggered from all directions, the largest from perhaps 1,500 meters above just below the settlement, completely obstructing passage. The two guesthouses there were partially destroyed by large boulders, and the army checkpoint barracks collapsed during the earthquake. The night after the quake, there were two groups sleeping in separate fields by the river, keeping distance from ongoing landslides and rockfall that continued throughout the night. The first Nepal Army helicopter arrived at about 8:30am, which dropped a “medic team” and took the injured from the upper camp; the second helicopter took more from the upper camp, a chaotic mix of Nepalis and foreigners. The group from below then moved up to the Army checkpost to evacuate their injured, however, the Army helicopter never came back (we were told due to fuel shortage and/or weather – however the Army did not have a radio or phone, or any means of communicating). After these helicopters came, Nepali survivors arrived from above and below, carrying several injured – this was the group closest to the avalanche – yet, unfortunately, the Army had no way of communicating this to the rescue teams. This added a high level of uncertainty to hours of extreme grief, as Nepalis arriving from above and below realized the scale of their loss. 24 hours after the slide, the Army then moved the group to a single location across the river, which proved to be the safest location. In the evening, a private helicopter (with limited seats) arrived to evacuate a group of three Nepalis, yet they were replaced with the five most injured Nepali children (thankfully, yet forcefully). After this, a few of us worked with the Nepal Army to establish a formal triage list, which was 25 Nepalis and 2 foreigners (one Dutch and one Italian) for the next large Army helicopter, which arrived the next morning. We successfully loaded the sick onto the helicopter, with a few other family members accompanying them at roughly 10am on April 27th. The army helicopter did not come back again until 645pm, and in between a private helicopter (a single pilot who did seven trips that day singlehandedly, pro bono) took two small groups of 6 people from Ghodatabela. The loading of all these helicopters was a highly chaotic experience, owing to both fear and ineffective/confused management on behalf of the Army. Communication improved throughout, but fell apart during the most emotional moments. At Ghodatabela, there was originally roughly 65 foreigners and perhaps 110 Nepalis – as of the night of April 27th there were still about 40 foreigners and 60 Nepalis stranded there. My hope is that another helicopter has been coordinated for this morning (I will refrain from the time being from being overly critical of the helicopter evacuation system, there are pros and cons), yet I fear that many evacuation attempts were limited by the storm system that came this afternoon. As of April 28th, as the aftershocks/tremors and rockfall have largely subsided, I was told that a few groups have successfully traveled from Ghodatabela through Sherpagaun via the high trail to Syaphru Besi. This is good news for the remaining, yet this is highly risky. Elsewhere in Rasuwa, around Briddim and Lingling and in several places along the road from Dhunche to Betrawati, in places such as Grang and Ramche, the majority of houses collapsed. I am not sure of the casualties caused by structural collapse. The Dhunche road itself seemed passable from the air, as there are no new large slides (other than the existing monsoonal ones), but I was told by someone walking from Syaphru Besi to Kalikasthan that a member of their group had fallen to their death while travelling. Along the Trishuli River valley itself, there are other smaller landslides and reports of significant collapse at Mailung, Simle, and Archale. In Betrawati, Gerkhu, and Mhanegaun in bordering Nuwakot district several houses also collapsed, and there were casualties in all of these places. The current data on total casualties following the earthquake here in Nepal is approaching 4,500. However, this is probably an underestimate considering that the estimate for the entire district of Rasuwa is 250, and there are at least 300 dead in the area around the village of Langtang alone. Across the board, it is still very difficult to determine exactly what has occurred in remote areas off the road system, as communication is down. Considered in terms of the percentage of total population, my sense is that Rasuwa has likely the third highest rate of fatality, behind Sindhupalchowk (at the epicenter of the major aftershock) and Dhading (closer to the center of the earthquake). Again, Langtang is probably one of the greatest single tragedies of this earthquake. This is the latest news that I have as of 5pm on April 28th.” Note that there are unconfirmed reports on 29th of another landslide wiping out a village below Langtang – RB.https://www.facebook.com/cumoderntibet/posts/1645635858992946?pnref=story ####### cr. Chokyi Nyima Rinpoche Monks on their way to remote villages. International aid groups have not yet been able to reach some of the small villages outside Kathmandu. Monks from Ka-Nying Shedrub Ling Monastery were one of the first to be able to reach some of those areas. Having found out what is needed they are now returning with supplies.