Surviving the Aftermath of Losing Your Home To a Fire, A Personal Perspective

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Grays Harbor Scanner had a chance to talk with a recent fire victim where a mother and her 3 kids lost their home due to a fire. This was a great opportunity to hear first hand what it is like to go through such a horrific incident of losing everything one owns, including pets.

Karla, says that when the call came out for the fire that she was not home at the time that the fire started and had received a call from her son Gavin, who is 18 years old. Gavin said there was a fire in the house and that he was still inside, this was while he was on the phone with her.

Karla called her neighbor and best friend Amy, which then called her son Aaron, who was home and a volunteer firefighter with Fire District 2 out of Central Park. She then jumped in her car as fast as she could and started driving to her house. She said she was so scared that she was going to lose her son and their pets 

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When Karla pulled into Hidden Valley, where she lives in a trailer in the park, all she could see was smoke and flames coming out of the trailer and the fire department already there. She pulled up and jumped out of the car, crying and asking where her son was. They told her that he made it out ok with the help of Aaron, her best friend's son and a volunteer firefighter. Firefighters then took her to see him, where she also asked about the animals, and they said two made it out the door. She was just heartbroken Bandit, her dog did make it out but was rushed to the vet for an emergency visit due to smoke inhalation.

They searched everywhere for Ollie, her 1-year-old pup and couldn't find him anywhere. They also couldn't find her daughters cats.

While the fire department was going through and putting out the fire, they did find her 1-year-old pup. He was still alive, so they put him on oxygen, and he was rushed to the vet for smoke inhalation. He was there at the vet clinic for a while, and then they got a call saying he wasn't going to make it. He had severe thermal burns. They then went to the vet clinic to say their last goodbyes.

At this point in the incident, Karla says that all she can think about is the cats. She was crying hysterically and started feeling so lost and felt so helpless that if she had been home, maybe she could have saved everything. She lost everything in the fire, and I is still at a loss of words to describe how she feels.

The fire department did call the red cross for her, and said that she was so thankful for the money that they gave her for food and clothes for her kids. But Karla was left to the decision on where everyone going to stay, and live. Currently, she is staying with her mom and her two girls. Her son is staying with her best friend Amy for the time being.

Friends and Family have set up both a GoFundMe account and a local donation bank account to help with the expenses that Karla faces.  It is said she has at least $3000 to pay off the burnt down trailer on top of the removal of the trailer costs and rebuilding what her and her kids need to return to a normal life after a fire.  To donate via GoFundMe visit this link .  To make a local bank donation, you can visit any Bank Of The Pacific locations and donate under the account "Fire Relief Fund For Karla"

Karla says that they have a new trailer to move into at the same park near her best friend's trailer, however due to still owing on the trailer that was involved in the fire, she is tasked with removing the trailer and paying it off before they will approve her to move into the other.

Karla says that she has been struggling with removing the trailer, as they couldn't find any companies that did this type of work (or that would call back). Friends that have said they would be there to help, just haven't shown up. She said thank goodness for family and friends for what they have done for her, but she has been working daily, sometimes by herself tearing the trailer down. It seems like everyone tells her they want to help me, but nobody shows to help.

Karla is still struggling to finish the trailer removal, and she just keeps moving forward, so she can get it done so my kids can have a house over their head again where they are all together.

Karla says even though it has been a couple of weeks, it stills brings her to tears when she looks at the trailer. Both of the cats were found deceased in the house when it was getting cleaned out. But she says that she just keeps going forward, pushing along and that's all I can do now is just keep going for her kids.

Later this week, GHScanner will have a follow up story from the perspective of a friend helping a friend surviving the aftermath of losing a home to a fire. 

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