Friday, 5:23 PM
Julio Lugo draws attention to relief efforts in Dominican Republic
By Globe Staff
Red Sox shortstop Julio Lugo appeared at a rally in Cambridge today to draw attention to relief efforts for victims of Hurricane Noel, which devastated his native Dominican Republic with floods and mudslides.
The region that includes Lugo's home city of Barahona in the southwestern part of the country was hit especially hard. Throughout the Dominican Republic, at least 79 people were killed and 62,000 were left homeless by the storm, according to the Associated Press.
To highlight a food and clothing drive, Lugo appeared today at Cambridge City Hall with the Red Cross, officials from the consulate of the Dominican Republic, and state Senator Anthony D. Galluccio.
"Julio Lugo puts a familiar local face on an international tragedy that should be of concern to us all," Galluccio said in a statement. "With the help of people like Julio Lugo, organizations like the Red Sox, and expert relief agencies like the Red Cross, relief efforts in the Dominican Republic will continue to make progress."
Other Major League Baseball players have also joined the effort. Former Red Sox pitcher Pedro Martinez delayed the start of his off-season training regimen in South Florida to stay in the Dominican Republic and try to help.
"There are a lot of people in need," Martinez told the New York Daily News. "It's devastating the way the area was totally wiped out. The little shacks and houses where they were living were wiped out."