As the situation on Hawaii Island continues to make national headlines, it's "heartfelt" for transplants everywhere. 

While in Alaska last week, one of our Island News reporters met Puna native Shaun Pacarro. Pacarro moved from Hawaii Island to Anchorage three
decades ago. 

He says most of his family still lives in the Puna District and tells Island News his sister, Shantel, her husband and two kids were among the many forced to evacuate their Leilani Estates home, last week.

"I just wish I was home to help out.. you know," he said. "The lava was like a hundred feet away from their house."

Island News caught up with Shantel. She tell us her home of more than two decades is now unlivable, adding that the structure is surrounded by cracks and has shifted from its foundation.

She says her family has presented offerings to Madam Pele.

"We welcome her. I mean we understand.. this is her Aina," she said.

For now, all Shantel and Shaun can do is watch and wait for Pele's next move. They say they have an older brother that lives in Nanawele, and fear his community may also have to evacuate soon. 

Shaun says being nearly 3000 miles away it's non-stop worry, but he's thankful he says that social media keeps him in the loop.

"I talk to him as much as possible.. We FaceTime like everyday," his sister added. 

Shaun adds that he wishes he could do more to help, but says that seeing the donations pour in, people in the community lending a helping hand and the Aloha from near and afar..  brings him comfort.

"I've been seeing it on Facebook, seeing all my friends helping out.. my family," he said. "We'd like to let you know our hearts are with you guys and we are following you guys every step of the way.. Puna Strong."

A GoFundMe has been set up for the Pacarro family. Click here to donate.