Ch 9 - August 14, 2023 10:13 am

Maui is just beginning the recovery efforts from the devastating wildfires that broke out early last week. One Oklahoma family has been there since the start and has seen the devastation firsthand.

The Miller’s trip to Maui was derailed Tuesday night, and now they’re witnessing devastation unfold right before their eyes, all while anxiously waiting to catch a flight back home.

“It’s just, it’s unbelievable. It’s hard to even explain,” said Chancy Miller, an Oklahoman stuck in Maui. “I would’ve never dreamed in a million years that I would witness something like this.”

Chancy Miller and his family of four landed in Maui early last week to stay in Wailea. But, their original plan was to stay about 45 minutes down the coast.

“It’s scary to think about because originally when we were booking our flight over here, we were going to stay in Lahaina because that’s where I stayed last time I was here,” said Chancy. “And it’s beautiful over there… It was, you know?”

Lahaina is now the location of the deadliest U.S. wildfire in 100 years and the death toll currently sitting at 93 as of Sunday night.

The Millers are safe but painfully aware.

“We’ve just kind of stayed put,” said Chancy. “Just 10-15 miles up the road it’s like a bomb went off.”

Their hotel has been opened as a refuge for survivors.

“I’ve spoken with some of them and it’s just terrible what they’ve been through,” said Chancy. “People were having to get out of their cars and jump in the water to try to save their lives. People were burning up in their homes, in their cars.”

These stories make Chancy lean on his faith.

“I just want to praise and thank God for his protection over me and my family,” said Chancy. “It could’ve gone the other way very easily.”

The Millers hope to return to Oklahoma Tuesday but say that people’s thoughts and prayers should be with the people of Maui right now.


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