In September 2009, Typhoon Ketsana dumped a foot and a half of rain on the Philippines in just 24 hours.
In the capital, Manila, muddy, sewage-filled floodwater trapped Veronica “Derek” Cabe’s family on the roof of their home.
“My family huddled together on the rooftop of our two-story house as the floodwaters sped past,” said Cabe, an environmental activist. “They could see bodies, animals, and even a coffin. It was like a horror movie.”
Cabe got stuck a few miles away from her family. She was getting text message updates from them, but couldn’t reach them.
“The fact that they were trapped in a life-and-death situation, and I had no idea how to help them was the worst nightmare that I’ve ever had,” Cabe told The World.