‘Primal fear’ as people across Hawaii get false alert of missile attack

John Aaron and his wife woke up on their honeymoon in Hawaii this morning to a startling alert: A ballistic missile attack was imminent.

The emergency alert was blasted over the hotel’s public address system and sent to people’s mobile phones across Hawaii just after 8 a.m. local time. The message that appeared on phones read in all caps, “Ballistic missile threat inbound to Hawaii. Seek immediate shelter. This is not a drill.”

Aaron and his wife immediately grabbed their belongings and left their hotel room in picturesque Maui in search for a safe place. Everyone else around them was doing the same.

“A very chaotic and nerve-wracking scene,” said Aaron, a reporter for ABC affiliate WTOP in Washington, D.C. “Some people were crying, a lot of people were frantic.”

The newlyweds eventually took shelter in a hotel supply room, where they waited to receive more information.

Valerie Turner, who lives on Kauai, hustled her two young children into a downstairs bathroom before becoming briefly overwhelmed before sitting out “the longest and most scariest 38 minutes of my life.”

“I just sobbed for a moment because I was so scared but it only lasted for maybe not even a minute because there wasn’t time, I needed to get down to my kids,” Turner related to ABC affiliate KGO. “And I just went down into the bathroom and we just sat there and I told them, ‘Let’s pray.'”

Paraluman Stice-Durkin, whose home has a bomb shelter that was built after the attack on Pearl Harbor, bundled her children and the family dog into the underground bunker, ABC affiliate KITV reported.

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