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01 Oct 2009 description
  • Death toll may rise on outlying islands

    - Villages vanished, washed away

    - Generators, medical supplies sought

    By Tim Wimborne

    SIUMU, Samoa, Oct 1 (Reuters)

  • Rescuers fished bloated corpses from the South Pacific off Samoa and pulled bodies from the mud and twisted rubble of devastated islands as the death toll from a series of tsunamis neared 200 on Thursday.

    Officials feared it could go much higher.

    A spotter aircraft circled the ocean looking for bodies, dropping smoke flares to pinpoint their location for a boat to collect.

01 Oct 2009 description
  • Relief effort begins after Tsunami hits islands

    * Villages and holiday resorts destroyed

    * U.S.

01 Oct 2009 description

By Tim Wimborne

LALOMANU, Samoa, Oct 1 (Reuters) - Grieving Samoans buried their dead in unmarked beachside graves on Thursday as the gruesome task of recovering bodies from villages destroyed by four tsunamis continued and an aftershock shook the region.

Some Samoans started rebuilding their South Pacific paradise, clearing debris from shattered homes, but others remained in nearby mountains, afraid to return to the coast for fear the ocean will again turn deadly.

Leausa Letoa, his wife and four daughters refused to return home, prefering to camp under a blue tarpaulin in a …