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3 Years After Haiti Earthquake, Orphanage Opens In Honor Of Mass. Victim

The newly constructed Be Like Brit orphanage in Grand Goave, Haiti, in the shape of a "B" (Courtesy Be Like Brit)

The new Be Like Brit orphanage in Grand Goave, Haiti, in the shape of a “B” (Courtesy Be Like Brit)

BOSTON — Three years ago Saturday, a 7.0-magnitude earthquake devastated the Caribbean nation of Haiti. Among those who died was 19-year-old Britney Gengel, of Holden.

Parents Cherylann and Len Gengel, second and third from the left, at the dedication of the orphanage on Jan. 5 (Courtesy)

Parents Cherylann and Len Gengel, second and third from the left, at the dedication of the orphanage on Jan. 5 (Courtesy)

The sophomore at Florida’s Lynn University had just arrived in Haiti on a humanitarian mission. Her family was first notified she was found alive, only to find out once they arrived in Florida to reunite with her that she was still missing. Her body was found in the rubble of her hotel in Port-au-Prince more than a month later.

Now, Britney Gengel’s parents, Len and Cherylann Gengel, have dedicated an orphanage in Haiti that they built in their daughter’s memory. They spoke with WBUR’s Sharon Brody.

Len and Cherylann Gengel have just published a book, “Heartache And Hope In Haiti: The Britney Gengel Story.” They will hold their first book signing Saturday, Jan. 12, from 12:00 to 2:00 p.m. at Barnes & Noble on Lincoln Street in Worcester. The Gengels say all proceeds from the book will help fund an endowment to support the Be Like Brit orphanage.

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