De Smet Jesuit students ready for hurricane relief in Puerto Rico

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CREVE COEUR, Mo. - The official death toll in Puerto Rico following Hurricane Maria stands at 55, although some officials say privately it may be as much as nine times higher. Those numbers reflect a still very difficult situation on the ground in the U.S. territory, which is why a group of students from De Smet Jesuit High School are trading in a week of work in the classroom for a week of hard labor in Puerto Rico.

Ten students and two teachers leave Sunday on a mission of mercy and service to assist their counterparts at Colegio San Ignacio, the Jesuit school in San Juan. While there, students will stay with families at night and head out into the local neighborhoods and communities to work on clean-up and recovery.

The trip puts the school's motto into practice, as the students work as "Men with and for Others."

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