Miracle of life -- Haiti youth rescued following 12 days in debris

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A young man was rescued on Sunday, 12 days after the quake that hit Haiti, from a collapsed building in Leogane, a town located some 29 km west of the Haitian capital of Port-au-Prince.

Leogane was hit badly by the 7.3-magnitude quake, with over 90 percent of its buildings flattened.

Lying in a simple hospital built by the international doctors, Journel Nazarre, 18, was so weak that his voice could hardly be heard.

The next day after the quake that rocked Haiti and killed more than 110,000, Nazarre was found by neighbors, with minor injuries.

The water, provided by the neighbors from the gap of the construction debris, was Nazarre's lifeline.

Without specific quake relief equipment, the rescue team organized by the town had been removing the bricks and stones for those days until he was rescued at the 12th day, almost dying.

Despite some injures on his body, he got no fractures and was conscious, Thomas Geiner, a German doctor, said.

What is currently the most serious for the young man is not the physical pain, but the psychological trauma following his 12-day struggle for life in the ruins, Geiner said.

Nevertheless, his survival was undoubtedly a miracle of life, the doctor added.

The day before Nazarre was freed from the debris, the Haitian government announced to end the search and rescue phase of the earthquake relief effort as chances for survival were getting remote.

However, rescuers and people whose family members are missing are still clinging to fading hopes, encouraged by occasional "miracles".

Following the devastating earthquake, many Haitians spontaneously organized themselves to dig up the rubbles by hands or simple tools in hopes of finding their relatives, friends, or just strangers.

"It's not only a miracle of life, but a miracle of self-rescue achieved by Haitian people," a foreign doctor said.

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