SAN DIEGO - While many families in San Diego are still waiting to hear back from their loved ones in the Philippines, hundreds of cyclists took to the streets Saturday to raise money for recovery efforts.
For Eric Camerino and his family, only one word described what it was like not knowing whether his parents survived the typhoon that left destruction in the Philippines.
"I think fear was there but we didn't want to admit that emotion," he said. "You don't want to admit that there's a risk you're going to lose your family."
Camerino's parents were far from hard-hit Tacloban, yet close enough to feel remnants of Typhoon Haiyan.
After seeing images of people in line for food, villages destroyed and the sick begging for help, Camerino organized a bike ride starting at Liberty Station to raise money that will help pay for the recovery efforts. What started off as a ride for 30, grew to a turnout of more than 200.
The death toll in the Philippines has already reached more than 3,600, with 12,000 people hurt and still almost 2,000 people missing.
"A lot of people feel directly for the people in the Philippines whether they are related by blood or not," said Camerino.
But for Lindsey Vlazzo, sitting back and watching is a lot more difficult. He is still waiting to hear from his family members.
He tells 10News that participating in fundraising events is the best way he can help.
"It's really hard … just the gut feeling, it's like your stomach is turning and this is one of the ways you can actually help, by supporting this," he said.
As part of the fundraiser, organizers also gathered clothes, food and shoes that will be delivered to the Philippines.