Adventure of the Seas brings evacuees from Puerto Rico to Fort Lauderdale

Adventure of the Seas brings evacuees from Puerto Rico to Fort Lauderdale. (WPEC)

Welcome to Florida.

An emotional scene unfolded as thousands of people from hurricane ravaged Puerto Rico arrived on the Adventure of the Seas cruise ship that Royal Caribbean volunteered to help move evacuees and supplies.

Since the ship was designated specifically for hurricane recovery work, evacuees were able to get a free ride from Puerto Rico to Fort Lauderdale.

For many of those families, this voyage was both lifesaving and bittersweet.

Many people were overcome with emotion and broke down into tears as they came off of the ship.

The ship carried 2,000 people away from the island paradise turned wasteland. For the elderly and sick, it is too hard to stay, but it was just as difficult to leave.

"My heart was broken, I felt like I couldn't do anything," evacuee Wanda Coyaso said.

Coyaso is a hairdresser and devoted daughter.

Coyaso's 72-year-old mother, Marta, lives in a high-rise in Sun Juan. She has no power, no water, Coyaso wanted her in Florida with her until things are functioning on the island.

The planning involved to get Coyaso's mom to her side was nerve wracking.

Before her mother got the free ride on Adventure of the Seas, Coyaso tried in vain to work with the airlines. A ticket was cancelled last minute and she thought she might never see her mom again.

"I'm just so grateful to Royal Caribbean, they gave us a chance to bring her," she said.

The Adventure of the Seas is also helping evacuees from St. Thomas and St. Croix.

close video ad
Unmutetoggle ad audio on off