DSCF0267, originally uploaded by iwantchai.

Pictured above is the main church on the square in Pisco, Peru in January 2006 during a funeral procession. As you can see, funerals are very big events in Peru where it is less of a mourning and more of a celebration of the person’s life. Often the entire town comes out on the streets and fills the church during such an event.

This was the case on Wednseday evening when the 8.0 earthquake struck. The church in Pisco collapsed around people commemorating the life of a passed loved one when the church collapsed around them. What remains of the church?

I’ve always said that I’m excited about the idea of earthquakes (being one that is studying geology), but never has one hit “close to home.” I visited the cities of Lima, Chincha, Pisco, and Ica during my trip to Peru and realizing that most of what I saw in the smaller cities to the south (especially Ica and Pisco) is gone…that’s hard. What remains is a devastated community left homeless, parentless, and desperately wishing their livelihoods had not been destroyed so suddenly.

Most of the buildings in Ica and Pisco were simple cinderblock structures that collapsed during the earthquake. It’s really sad to see communities that already had so little now have even less.

I need to track down the friends I made during my visit…I hope they’re all still okay!


  1. myherojay on 08.23.2007

    it’s really tragic what happened there and will continue to haunt for years to come. The scariest part is how many strong aftershocks there have been- the day after the quake i counted 18 or 19 that measured over 5.0, a few even over 6.0- and that was only one day later! I was kinda looking forward to another quake here in l.a. because it’s been so long- but I would LEAVE IMMEDIATELY if there were aftershocks like that every hour! :(

  2. alsemof on 01.11.2008

    privet mike! haven’t seen u for a while. add me to your friend pls=)))))

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