Tags: Haiti | quake | aid | death

American Helping in Haiti Shot-To-Death

Friday, 26 February 2010 10:04 AM

A beloved grandfather from Long Island, N.Y., was shot to death Wednesday on the streets of Haiti's capital in what officials believe is the first casualty of an American involved in Haitian relief efforts, FoxNews.com has learned.

Jowel Vieux, 62, immigrated to the United States in the 1970s but still maintained a home and small auto shop in Port-au-Prince, where many of his family members remained. He flew to Haiti on Jan. 24, against the urging of family members worried about his safety.

He hoped to salvage what he could from his properties, which were completely destroyed, and to help search for missing family members, and he wanted to assist in the overall recovery efforts in the country he loved, his family said.

He was wrapping caution tape around the rubble that once was his home Wednesday when he was shot in the back multiple times by a group of men, family members said. U.S. Marines who were in the neighborhood followed the sound of gunshots and found Vieux lying in the street in front of his home and pronounced him dead.

The reason for the killing is unclear, and authorities contacted for this story wouldn't comment on possible motives.

“This is the kindest man, and he was just murdered,” Vieux's daughter-in-law, Jasmine Vieux, told FoxNews.com.

Jowel Vieux, a prostate cancer survivor from Roosevelt, N.Y., leaves behind his wife, three children and nine grandchildren.

“While it is possible that some incidents, particularly among Haitian-American dual nationals living in Haiti, may not have been reported to the U.S. embassy, an initial review of our consular records indicates that we have no reports of other, non-earthquake-related deaths in the category you describe,” U.S. State Department spokesman Charles Luoma-Overstreet said in an e-mailed statement.

Luoma-Overstreet was unable to confirm the details of Vieux’s death provided to FoxNews.com by the family.

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Friday, 26 February 2010 10:04 AM
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