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WILMINGTON, NC (WWAY) — This weekend’s mall massacre in Kenya hits close to home for a man with Wilmington connections.

Bill Coble’s parents and brother live here. Coble has spent the past several years doing humanitarian projects in Kenya and visited the mall last week.

“I was there one week ago prior to the attacks sitting in the exact place where the attacks started,” Coble told WWAY during a phone interview today. “We had good friends that are american that were there one day before.”

Coble is the founder of Start with One Kenya, which is a non-profit organization that provides clean water to rural areas of the country.

Coble now lives in Kenya, but was not in Nairobi on the day of the attacks that killed 68 people.

“It’s as close to being home for me as anything here in Kenya. It is a modern mall with nice shops,” Coble said.

Last year I traveled to Kenya and spent time with Coble and his team and even experienced the security check points at local shopping centers.

“The way it is built, there is very limited access, which is probably why it was a target, because you can only get into the mall from three different locations, so once you are in it’s hard to get out,” he said.

Coble says he and his team are in contact with the US State Department. He says he continues to follow the events as they unfold, but that these most recent attacks won’t affect his mission.

“Do I fear for my life? No. Am I a little more vigilant? Yes, absolutely,” Coble said.

Coble and his wife will remain in Kenya for the next few months. They hope to return to Wilmington before the end of the year.

Comment on this Story

  • Ken

    Mr & Ms Coble, I admire the courage you displayed in remaining while so many others may choose to leave. I pray that your desire to help others less fortunate inprove the quality their lives will not prove harmful to you or them. It is sad there are so many in this world today that do not wish to see their lives and the lives of others improve. God be with you.

  • Guestsfndi

    I was at the twin towers once.

  • mike G

    Guestsfindi: Now that’s funny!!!
    I love this section, it’s better than the not so funny funnies!


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