Fiji Time: 5:36 PM on Monday 27 April

Fiji Times Logo

/ Front page / News

Till death do us part

Maciu Malo In The Yasawa Group
Monday, December 24, 2012

A DAY before Christmas and a remarkable story of unfailing and enduring love has emerged from one of the worst cyclone-hit regions in the country.

Through teary eyes, a 66-year-old woman's love for her handicapped husband is told — her commitment to their "till death do us part" vows unbreakable — even as Tropical Cyclone Evan shattered everything that surrounded them.

Grandmother Seruwaia Sau refused to leave husband Jone's side when wind of up to 270 kilometres an hour smashed their home to pieces at Natawa Village on Waya Island in the Yasawa Group, leaving only a bed for them to shelter under.

The couple were trapped under the bed for six hours before some village men came to their rescue.

"My husband cannot walk and has been bedridden for years," said Mrs Sau.

"He told me several times to leave but we are both old and have been together for so long. I didn't want a cyclone to separate us.

"I made a lifelong commitment to him and was ready for the consequences of this decision," Mrs Sau said during an interview with The Fiji Times. The couple have been married for more than 40 years.

Mr Sau said they were alone at home when the wind intensified.

"It was one of the most terrifying hours but right now I thank the Almighty Lord for giving me another day to be with my wife," he said. "There are two beds in our house and both of us were lying on each bed when Evan struck."

"After a while I heard a loud sound and the next thing I could feel was the rain dropping on me," said Mr Sau.

"I called on my wife and she told me that part of the roof had been blown away so I told her to hide under the bed.

"For me, since I cannot stand, I just rolled over and fell from the bed and then I struggled to get under it.

"While under the bed I continued calling my wife to find out whether she was alright and I was happy that every time I called she answered me, so I knew she was still alive. I then told her to leave me behind and look for a place to take cover but she insisted she'd stay with me.

"We were there for about six hours. The next thing I remember is a group of boys in the village calling me saying, 'Tai John we are coming to take you'.

"I got a shock when the boys dragged me out and I saw my house was no more. I am still trying to make sense of what happened, how we survived such a frightening ordeal," said Mr Sau.

The couple are now residing at a nephew's home in the village.

Fiji Times Front Page Thumbnail

Kaila Front Page ThumbnailFiji Times & Kaila Frontpage PDF Downloads

Use the free Acrobat Reader to view.

Today's Most Read Stories

  1. Children watch senseless beating
  2. Fatal night out
  3. Reddy for talks
  4. The sevens challenge
  5. No discrimination
  6. Church celebrates 25 years
  7. Celebrating success
  8. Women take up backyard gardening
  9. Council revives carnival after a lapse of 6 years
  10. Funds a barrier

Top Stories this Week

  1. The murder of a schoolteacher Tuesday (21 Apr)
  2. Wrong body for burial Thursday (23 Apr)
  3. Hunt for terrorist Thursday (23 Apr)
  4. Unclaimed body laid to rest Tuesday (21 Apr)
  5. Man found unconscious, pronounced dead Sunday (26 Apr)
  6. Children watch senseless beating Monday (27 Apr)
  7. Rights over freehold land Wednesday (22 Apr)
  8. PM's office receives 1000 complaints Thursday (23 Apr)
  9. Fatal night out Monday (27 Apr)
  10. Wife wished cancer for hubby Tuesday (21 Apr)