GREENVILLE COUNTY, S.C. (FOX Carolina) - Some South Carolina parents are concerned about their children who have been stranded in Peru for ten days. This comes as the world works to overcome the COVID-19 pandemic. They are pleading with state and federal leaders to bring their children home.
The parents say the adult college students went to Peru on a spring break trip.
"They did know that the coronavirus was going on, at the time they did research and found out that there were only six cases in the whole country of Peru,” said Sue Avenall, one of the parents.
Borders across many nations are closed, those parents feel it’s nearly impossible to speak with someone who truly understands their fears and can help with getting them home.
"[I’ve] Reached out to the U.S. Embassies, we've been on emergency calls with embassies and all you do is get the same thing 'We're doing the best we can, tell them to hunker down'," Avenall said.
The parents didn’t want to release the children's names out of fear for their safety, but we do know they attend college in Charleston. They’ve also said the three stranded in Peru have encountered threats, acts of violence, and rage from Peru militants.
Randy Shuler is the father of one of those stranded, he told FOX Carolina his daughter become physically sick and had to receive healthcare from missionary doctors.
"It's frustrating, they've lived through that, they've been tough through that. I would ask they United States government to do something about it and take some action," he said.
This has enacted a fight-or-flight response for the stranded students.
"She's making quesadillas on an ironing board with an iron so that they can eat. They're cooking rice in a tea pot, a camping tea pot, they’re cooking beans in a tea pot and doing the best they can with what they have," according to Shuler.
FOX Carolina has been in touch with Rep. Jeff Duncan’s office. Duncan's staff tells us he has spoken to Secretary of State Mike Pompeo and incoming White House Chief of Staff Mark Meadows personally – several times – advocating for these constituents.
The following statement was released from Rep. Duncan’s regarding a previous story but similar situation of students from Clemson University who are also stuck in Peru: “We are working around the clock in a close partnership with the State Department to bring these constituents home to the United States. We are pursuing every avenue to assist them during this time.”
FOX Carolina has reached out to the offices of U.S. senators Lindsey Graham and Tim Scott, as well, for a response. We have thus far not heard back.