American Killed in Haiti Quake Had Local Ties

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The first American reported killed by the earthquake in Haiti was a foreign service officer crushed when her home collapsed.

Victoria J. DeLong, 57, died Tuesday, said State Department spokesman P.J. Crowley. DeLong, a 27-year diplomat and native of California with ties to both Santee and Bonita, was a cultural affairs officer and was stationed at the U.S. Embassy in Port-au-Prince since February of last year.

No hometown was immediately available, although officials said she had a home in Virginia. She also has a former address in San Francisco.

"In one of the most challenging environments in the world, she dedicated herself to educational and cultural exchange between the people of Haiti and the people of the United States," the State Department said in a notice sent to employees.

Crowley said three other Americans were known to be missing after the 7.0 magnitude quake and that the embassy had made contact with nearly 1,000 U.S. citizens in Haiti, a small fraction of the estimated 45,000 there.

Copyright AP - Associated Press
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