When a Chinese delegation of seven people representing the city of Deyang in Sichuan Province visited Sandy Springs in November, they proposed a sister city partnership. However, Deyang was severely damaged by the May 12 earthquake which struck its province.

By May 18, the death toll in the total Deyang area – which includes six cities – had reached 10,364, according to a letter dated May 19 and sent to Mayor Eva Galambos from the Overseas Chinese Affairs Office of Deyang Municipal People’s Government. Galambos said May 22 she hopes to set up a relief fund for Deyang and provide citizens with the opportunity to donate on the city’s website.

“I would hope that we could put together a $10,000 donation,” she said. “I wanted it to come out of the city budget, but that’s a gratuity and we can’t do it.”

The possibility Sandy Springs will enter into a sister city partnership with Deyang remains, although it is unlikely, said Galambos.