SOUTH WILLIAMSPORT, Pa. -- A massive hurricane is expected to impact the Hawaiian islands on Thursday morning. Some families from Hawaii are in South Williamsport right now for the Little League World Series. The West Region team is from Honolulu.
Sam Kea and his wife were all decked out in their Hawaiian West Region team gear. Their son, Aukai Kea, gave his all on the pitcher’s mound in Williamsport. However, his parents couldn’t help but have part of their minds thousands of miles away, too. Hurricane Lane is expected to hit close to home.
“It's a once in a lifetime experience, but my heart is bleeding for all my family back home,” Sam Kea said.
The powerful hurricane sits south of the islands now, but it is expected to turn north, which will put all of the Hawaiian islands in the worst possible position.
In South Williamsport, Sean Yamaguchi hit a grand slam during the game. It was a bright spot during a hectic day for dad.
“I just got off the phone with my brother-in-law who is tying down our batting cage to make sure that it doesn't fly away, but there are a lot of preparations being done back home,” Michael Yamaguchi said.
People who were in the stands from our area say they can empathize with the families from Hawaii because northeastern and central Pennsylvania just went through a natural disaster, too.
“We've seen the aftermath from Knoebels. Them having to drain the pool and then clean the pool, scrub the pool and then get it reopened, just the devastation and the cost,” AJ Worhacz of Kulpmont said.
The Hawaiians are grateful for the welcome they’ve been given here in the Commonwealth and tell Newswatch 16 they appreciate all the support from back home.
“They've given us all this energy and love, and Aloha and we want to make sure that they know that we basically are thinking about them before any baseball game and hope everybody is alright back home,” Yamaguchi said.
“Everybody has been real supportive back home, telling us to stay and make the best of it and they'll take care of it for us but our hearts bleed for them,” Kea said.
The Little Leaguers from Hawaii defeated New York 10-0, advancing to Saturday’s US Championship game.