The New Victorian School was completely destroyed by the 7.0 earthquake which hit Port-au-Prince, Haiti. At the time of the earthquake, approximately 4:55 pm, there were no students or staff in the facility. Only six people were in the school building. Four of the six survived; two lost their lives.
Romel Joseph, Executive Director, had just gone up to the third floor to deliver a phone message to his friend. While he was standing on the third floor balcony, the building began to tremble. Within seconds, it collapsed. Mr. Joseph was trapped under the rubble of the school for 18 hours. His legs and feet were pinned under the concrete support beams of the fourth and fifth floors. On Wednesday morning at approximately 11 am, he was freed from his "concrete tomb." Friday, Mr. Joseph was airlifted by the American Embassy to Ryder Trauma Center at Jackson Memorial Hospital in Miami, Florida. He is currently being treated for fractures and other injuries to his left hand and both legs.
Walenstein Musical Organization, Mr. Joseph's non-profit 501(c)3 music institution in Miami, Florida, will present a benefit concert to help raise funds for the reconstruction of The New Victorian School featuring some of South Florida's most talented music students and members of Walenstein Symphony Orchestra.