03/11/11 — City man's nephew in Japan when quake hit

View Archive

City man's nephew in Japan when quake hit

By Kenneth Fine
Published in News on March 11, 2011 1:46 PM

When the Original Tabernacle of Prayer For All People congregation comes together this evening on John Street, it will give thanks for the survival of the nephew of one of its ministers.

Michael Bell, a professional basketball player, was among those who endured the earthquake and ensuing tsunami that rocked Japan early Friday.

"He was in it," said the young man's uncle, Tha'Roy Davis, a Goldsboro minister. "It's my baby sister's son."

Davis has limited information on the conditions the disaster left in its wake.

"But I know he said the airport was wiped out -- washed out, you know?" he said. "That's what he texted."

And he knows what he considers the most important fact: His loved one escaped what could have been a tragic fate.

"I just got off the phone with (my sister) and as far as I know, she's handling it pretty well," he said. "He's safe, you know?"

So when he joins other members of his congregation several hours from now for their Friday service, Davis plans to give thanks for just that -- while reaching out, spiritually, to those who were devastated by, and remain in, the storm's path.

"And we're gonna pray," he said. "I know we're gonna pray."