Chesterfield woman in Hawaii during false alarm: 'I was shaken'

Chesterfield woman in Hawaii during false alarm: 'I was shaken'
Susan and Kelly (Source: Family)
Susan and Kelly (Source: Family)

CHESTERFIELD, VA (WWBT) - A mother's worst nightmare became a reality when her phone rang and her daughter on the other end in Honolulu was given less than 20 minutes to find shelter.

A typical day for Susan Davis means tending to her horse farm, but a phone call from her daughter 5,000 miles away nearly changed her life forever.

"I couldn't understand her. There was a lot of crying and screaming," said Susan Davis, Kelly's mother.

Then Susan received a grim message in capital letters from her daughter.

"Alert: BALLISTIC MISSILE THREAT INBOUND TO HAWAII. SEEK IMMEDIATE SHELTER. THIS IS NOT A DRILL," the message said.

Susan's daughter, Kelly, a registered nurse in Honolulu, had 15 minutes to find shelter.

"She's like, 'Mom, it's 15 minutes. If it's coming, it's going to be over in 15 minutes,' " said Susan. "We thought we were going to lose our daughter. She thought she was going to lose her parents."

"I was shaking. I called my parents. I pretty much... we thought that was it," said Kelly Davis through FaceTime. "It was exactly what you'd think a last phone call to a loved one would be."

Susan and Kelly stayed on the phone with each other for an excruciatingly tense half hour, but nothing happened.

"The sirens never went off," said Kelly.

They would soon learn it wasn't the end for Hawaii, or the last time they'd speak to each other. The alert sent by the Hawaii Emergency Management Agency was a mistake.

"And we hung up the phone, and we cried. Yeah, that's what gets me," said Susan.

But tensions are still high for people in Hawaii and their families.

"It's still a real threat and something that is on the back of our minds on a daily basis," said Kelly.

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