BOULDER, Colo. (CBS4) – People in Colorado and around the world are coming together to remember those killed in a massive earthquake in Nepal. Tuesday evening a vigil was held in Boulder, which has a large Nepalese community.
The vigil in Boulder was held for the victims, and the survivors of the devastating earthquake. As many as 500 people showed up to the gathering that was organized by the Rocky Mountain Friends of Nepal, a nonprofit that’s been around since 2002.
The Rocky Mountain Friends of Nepal was formed to strengthen the Nepalese community in Boulder, but now they are sending that help back to Nepal.
“I was born in Nepal,” said Surendra Shrestha, a spokesman for the group.
Shrestha moved to the United States as a teenager, but his culture and country were always close to his heart.
“Sometimes I go once a year, sometimes I go three times a year,” Shrestha said.
Upon hearing of Saturday’s earthquake, his thoughts immediately went to his homeland and his family.
“My heart just dropped,” he said.
His two brothers and their children live in Kathmandu, as well as more relatives in surrounding communities. He said they all survived the earthquake, but their homes were damaged.
“I know some of my relatives are sleeping in tents.”
Now he says the focus is on not only getting immediate help to those in need, but also preserving a culture that has temples and structures that have stood for centuries, and in some cases are now just rubble.
“They are the icons of Nepal. Really they are hundreds of years old,” Shrestha said.
They are asking for Coloradans to help in any way they can.
“We’re with them even though our bodies are here. Our soul and spirit are there with them.”
The Rocky Mountain Friends of Nepal is asking for donations through their website that they will send to Nepal through the Red Cross.