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Beirut bride from Troy raising money to help victims of devastating blast

Posted at 12:09 PM, Sep 20, 2020
and last updated 2020-09-20 19:06:39-04

TROY, Mich. (WXYZ) — It’s been more than six weeks since a blast in Beirut left the city devastated. It was a life changing event for many, including a woman from Troy.

RELATED: Bride in viral Beirut blast video is a Doctor from Troy now struggling to return home

Video of Israa Al-Seblani posing for her wedding photos went viral, showing the moments after the blast. Her wedding day is now marked by this terrible tragedy. Israa had to leave her new husband behind in Lebanon when she returned to Michigan.

Now, she’s hoping to bring him home soon.

“What happened with me wasn’t easy,” she said.

After the blast, the doctor jumped into action trying to help those injured while still in her wedding gown. The devastation rocked the city there, so much so that Israa says there is still shattered glass and rubble throughout the streets.

“People are sad, truly sad," Israa said. "There is no place for happiness anymore.”

The bride returned to Michigan several days ago without her groom. She and her husband Ahmad had waited three years to get married. They kept postponing their wedding date because they were waiting for the U.S. to approve Ahmad’s immigration status.

The couple didn’t want to wait anymore and got married on Aug. 4.

“We love each other truly and we believe in each other,” Israa said.

After this life-changing moment, Israa didn't want to leave Ahmad behind in Lebanon, but she had no choice because his visa hadn’t been approved yet.

“I was telling him ‘goodbye,’ but I wasn’t really sure that when I come back I will see him or I will find him there,” Israa said.

She says the situation is dire in Lebanon right now and she is concerned for Ahmad’s safety. She tells us after her story aired on 7 Action News, she started working with members from Rep. Haley Stevens’ office, as well as Sen. Gary Peters’ office, in hopes of getting Ahmad to the U.S. as soon as possible.

“I just pray to be with my husband here in the USA as soon as possible,” Israa said.

In the meantime, she started a GoFundMe page to raise money to send supplies and other support to the devastated community in Beirut.

To donate at: https://www.gofundme.com/f/The-1000000-Dreamer-Fundraiser-for-Lebanon.