Puerto Ricans in Memphis asking for support to help island recover after hurricane’s devastation

MEMPHIS, Tenn. — While Joy Padilla-Anderson, owner of Joy Ride food truck, tries to focus on customers, she admits, her mind is elsewhere.

"I cry everyday. It's really rough because it's our island."

Padilla-Anderson is working with fellow Puerto Ricans in Memphis to try to help the island recover from Hurricane Maria.

She's working with Marlon Mercado, who moved to Memphis about a year ago. The rest of his family lives in Puerto Rico.

"I'm desperate to hear their voices. Heartbroken that everybody I know can't connect with their family. I get that phone every hour and I have no answer."

He says the main road into the city where his sister lives has collapsed. All he can do from Memphis is bring others together.

Padilla-Anderson says Joy Ride will donate a part of its proceeds next week to relief.

"That's what we're calling for, for anyone here in Memphis can help. The biggest thing is to be united, get together. More than Americans, we're humans," Mercado said.

He hopes to organize a fundraiser for hurricane relief efforts. His group, Puerto Rico in Memphis, Tennessee, plans to meet on Saturday at 2 p.m. in Shelby Farms to form a plan.