Culture
2:37 pm
Tue January 8, 2013

Three Years After Haiti Earthquake, Dancer Works To Rebuild Life

Fabienne Jean walks outside her home in Haiti.
Fabienne Jean walks outside her home in Haiti.
Credit Nick Kozak

The earthquake that struck Haiti three years ago this month sent a concrete wall crashing down onto the 30-year-old dancer Fabienne Jean. Her right leg was crushed and had to be amputated. When Fabienne danced again, she was hailed as a symbol of Haiti’s post-earthquake recovery.

But as reporter Jacob Kushner discovered, the quest to rebuild one woman’s life would take much more than that.

In the first part of this four-part series about Fabienne, Kushner examines the hopes and expectations that evolved in the aftermath of the earthquake. 

Fabienne became a sort of symbol for Haiti's recovery and her story quickly found its way into part of a narrative about the resilience of the Haitian people and hope for the country's recovery. 

Here are just a few of the optimistic stories that were first written about her: 

If you had only followed Fabienne's story for the first few months after the quake, it might seem as though she was on her way to a full recovery and a new life—thanks to an international community of doctors and healers.

But as Kushner found out, the story didn't end that way. Check back tomorrow to discover what happened next. 

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