Rebuild for Steve & Kelly (Fire)

Steve Decker and Kelly Pollard lost everything they own to a wildfire this week. They escaped with their kids and their dogs, but not much else.

Please dig deep and donate to help Steve and Kelly rebuild. Think about it - they need to replace everything. New furniture, new appliances, new toys, new underwear, new deodorant - big things and little things are all gone. You can help. Please give.

Below is the view from their house before the fire. When they awoke early Monday morning, that hillside in the background was in flames. Flames had jumped the pond by the time they were driving away.


Here is a note from Steve about the night of the fire:

"When Kelly and I went to bed Sunday night, we talked about the wind. It was a loud long howl. I read an alert on my phone that said fire danger was potentially high in our area, but we didn’t think much of it. Around 1 am I awoke to the beeps and chirps of the power turning off and then back on.  I figured it was from the wind and reset my alarm clock and went back to bed. 

 I woke up again to a funny smell around 2:40 AM (I’m a light sleep).  I looked out the window up toward the ridge to the east of the house and could see it glowing orange and red, and knew it was a fire.  I woke Kelly up and we tried to asses the fire from our bedroom window, then the living room window, then the deck, hoping to see it contained in one area, but every time we moved rooms, the fire traveled further. It was charging towards us. We had to act.
I called 911 to ask what was going on. Finally (after being transferred by three people) I got to a person that told us that we could evacuate or shelter in place. I told them that we were evacuating and told Kelly to start packing up.  Kelly asked “Why don’t we hear any sirens, where are the fire trucks?”  Little did we know how big the fire already was, and how much it already had destroyed. Regardless, at that point we knew we were on our own.

We let the kids sleep for a little bit longer while we were packing clothes and any belongings that we could quickly grab.  We did not want to scare the kids.  I ran to our neighbors to wake them up and let them know we were evacuating.  During that time the fire had started coming down the hill due to high winds.  I knew we did not have much time.  We started packing both cars with what little we could grab.   About 15 minutes later the fire reached the other side of the pond.  The wind was so strong that it was sending embers over the house as we were packing.  We knew time was up and went to grab the kids. When we woke them up there was a soft red glow on their little faces. 

Trying to keep calm, I sent Kelly and the kids to the town center, where she called neighbors and tried to find any info about the fire.  I got in my truck and drove back to our street, honking my horn and knocking on our neighbors doors to make sure everyone was out.  I then went back to our house one last time to turn on the sprinklers and see if I could get anything else, but after seeing flames on both sides of my house, I was not sure if I would see it again. 

By 9 am we learned that our house was destroyed. Below is the picture a firefighter took confirming the news. Despite being overcome with shock, we’ve also been completely humbled by everyone’s kindness. Thanks for all the well wishes, it means everything to us."

I've known Kelly since college and she has stood by my side for 20 years. It's fair to say that Kelly has kept me sane through some very difficult times. I'm guessing that Steve or Kelly has done something special for you over the years too. If you happen to be reading this and don't know this family personally, know that they are exceptional people raising two amazing kids. They need and deserve all the help we can give them.

Please give. Give all that you can spare to help them replace what they lost. There isn't a lot we can do to heal the heartbreak, but at least we can help them buy new things to replace what is gone.

Everything raised will go directly to Steve and Kelly. 

Thank you,

Mary Beth Collins
Reno, NV
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Organizer and beneficiary

Mary Beth Collins 
Redwood Valley, CA
Steve Decker 
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