By now you have likely heard about the devastating Valley Fire in Lake County, a neighboring county about an hour from where I live in Sonoma Valley.
What began as a laid-back weekend for us quickly turned into a whirlwind Saturday afternoon when my husband was called out to help fight the fire. He got word that a fast-moving wild land fire had started and four firefighters had been burned and required hospitalization.
Since details are constantly changing and accessible online, I thought I would skip them and instead share some images with you that my husband took from the front lines .
When I first saw this photo, my stomach dropped. I have seen this sign, know where it is (was) and seeing it ablaze was disturbing and gut-wrenching.
You may have seen this image elsewhere. It has made the rounds and even ended up on CNN late Saturday night which was a bit of fun news to pass along to my husband.
Bill was stationed in Middletown that afternoon and throughout the night. He continued to periodically sent videos and photos to me which encouraged me to stay awake into the early morning Sunday. I watched the news online, waited for communication from him, and worried, of course. I try not to worry but it’s next to impossible.
The next morning, daylight revealed the massive destruction. Here are more images, taken Sunday morning in Middletown.
This was once a two-story, three building apartment building.
There were some positive images too. During the night, my husband and his crew were able to save some homes in this neighborhood. Notice the home burned to the ground between two homes that are still standing. I don’t know much about firefighting but my guess is that it took a lot of skill and a lot of effort to save those two houses in those windy, treacherous conditions. I am so proud of my husband and his crew.
Another positive image showed up on the Press Democrat website last night. A young girl thanked firefighters, including my husband on the right, with a grateful hug.
If you would like to help those impacted by the Valley Fire, visit the Redwood Credit Union site and make a donation. Or text REDCROSS to 90999 to make a $10 donation.
If you are local, there are donation sites throughout the area. Sonoma Market and Glen Ellen Market are both taking non-perishable food, diapers, pet food, towels, blankets, batteries, toiletries, etc.
And my friend, Letitia of ARS Roofing has organized a huge collection at her office in Santa Rosa. Visit her Facebook page to get more details.
When disasters like this hit close to home it puts things in perspective and makes you see things with better clarity. It’s made me incredibly grateful for the things I often take for granted like a roof over my head, safe and healthy family, friends and pets, a cozy bed and hot meal. I do hope it won’t be too long before those displaced can once again enjoy those little things that really aren’t so little at all.
Make it a rich day ~