News of these fires made my heart sink. I've visited the beautiful island of Maui many times and have friends living there. I was grateful to learn they were safe but devastated to learn of the depth of destruction. Fires on the island of Maui began on Tuesday, August 8, 2023 as strong winds fueled sparks from a downed powerline. The historic town of Lahaina was nearly completely destroyed as the fire spread so quickly that many people headed to the ocean to escape the flames.
By the time the sun set on Wednesday, August 9, there were over 11,000 customers without electricity, over 14,000 people moved off the island and hundreds of people unaccounted for as lack of radio and cell signals challenged communications. Search and rescue teams were launched to find missing people. CNN's chief climate correspondent Bill Weir reported from the damaged Lahaina town Thursday. “(There was) just lifeless, smoky, and where Lahaina town used to be,” Weir said.
People Still Missing on Maui and Death Toll
As of August 25, 2023 there are still 388 people missing and 115 people dead making the Maui fire the deadliest wildfire in history. The number of people who lost their lives in this wildfire is expected to continue to rise.
Relief and Rebuilding Lahaina and Maui
With disaster relief and time, Maui will rebuild. Its residents are cautious to move too quickly and want to see the culture and traditions respected and preserved.
To contribute to the relief effort, consider a donation to the Maui Strong Fund.
The Maui Strong Fund is providing financial resources to support the immediate and long-term recovery needs for the people and places affected by the devastating Maui wildfires.
HCF is working in close collaboration with state and county leaders, nonprofit organizations, and community members to get an understanding of the quickly evolving priorities.
Print Purchase Profits Donated to Maui Strong Fund
In addition to making a donation to the fund, Joe Garza Photography is donating 20% of all profits through the end of September to the Maui Strong Fund.
Consider a print of this gorgeous island to help support rebuilding. You can visit Joe's collection of Maui images here or select an image from any other of the fine art images for sale for your wall art.
Makena Beach, also known as Secrets Beach, on the island of Maui is one of the most beautiful beaches for sunset. The palm trees, dark lava rocks along the shore, and soft sandy beach bring the perfect place to watch the day wind down.