Colombia: Aftermath of a Disaster

Amid tragedy and exhaustion, the cleanup continues

Seven days after the devastating eruption of Nevado del Ruiz on Nov. 13, rescue workers in Armero were still finding living victims in the 15 ft. of ooze that covered the town. The searchers knew that they had nearly run out of luck. "If there are any more out there alive it would be a miracle," said Volunteer José de Jesus Lerna after several of the rescued had died. "Death is now unchallenged in Armero."

As the gripping drama of the rescue effort gradually gave way to exhaustion and a sense of futility, stunned Colombians turned their attention to assessing the...

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