Mariel begs Hemingway house manager to evacuate before Irma
By Natalie Musumeci
September 8, 2017 | 12:43pm
Actress Mariel Hemingway is begging the elderly manager of her famed grandfather’s historic Key West home to evacuate before Hurricane Irma hits Florida.
The granddaughter of legendary author Ernest Hemingway called it “heartbreaking and absolutely wonderful” that Jacqui Sands, the 72-year-old manager of the Ernest Hemingway Home and Museum, has vowed to ride out the deadly storm for the sake of the 19th-century residence and its 50-plus cats, but she wants Sands to hit the road.
“I mean, it’s really frightening. I really think that this hurricane is a big deal,” Hemingway told TMZ in an exclusive interview published Friday.
In speaking about Sands, the Oscar-nominated actress said: “I think that you’re a wonderful and admirable person for trying to stay there and save the cats and save the house and all that stuff, but ultimately it’s just a house. Save the cats. Get all the cats in the car and take off.”
Sands told the Washington Post this week that she isn’t going anywhere even as the powerful, now-Category 4 storm makes its way toward Florida.
“If I didn’t have to, I wouldn’t stay,” Sands told the newspaper. “My kids told me to get the hell out. But I have an obligation to take care of the building and the cats.”
A mandatory evacuation order has been issued for the Keys, where the storied Hemingway estate is located.
The sprawling, Queen Anne-style Victorian house, built in 1851, is home to more than 50 cats, many of which are six- and seven-toed.
Sands plans to hunker down in the residence with the kitties and a team of nine employees.
“They couldn’t leave because either they don’t have a car or couldn’t find a flight out of here,” Sands told the news outlet. “I think we are going to be fine.”
Florida officials have strongly advised anyone residing in an evacuation zone to leave.
Monroe County administrator Roman Gastesi urged residents of Key West to get out while they still can.
“You might as well leave now, while you have a chance, because when you dial 911, you will not get an answer,” Gastesi said Thursday.
With Post wires