Family friends are bringing the community together after a fire tore through an East Vancouver home, leaving a 2-year-old girl dead.
Liz Carbello goes to the same community church as the Lemus family, and has watched their kids grow up.
“We’re all very devastated. It’s very tragic, I also have kids, and I just can’t imagine, I can’t even start to feel or think what they’re going through,” she says.
Firefighters believe the flames that tore through the home on Nootka St. Thursday were sparked by a pair of space heaters while the family’s twin girls were having a nap.
Their mother tried to rescue both girls, but the fire was too involved and she ended up in hospital with serious burns to her face and hands.
Carbello says friends have now started a fundraising campaign, to take the pressure off the shattered family.
“[When something like this happens] your mind is somewhere else. So we said hey let’s start a Gofundme page in order for them to, you know, get some funds, and when the time is ready, then they’ll have those funds for the immediate needs that they will need and not have to… maybe take the stress off.”
She says the main priority now is finding housing for the Lemus family, who are hoping to stay together and somewhere in the same neighbourhood.
But she says they’re dealing with other challenges too.
“There’s probably other costs that are gonna be coming as like, you know, the service for their daughter.”
In the day since the fundraiser was set up, it’s already surpassed its original goal, and has now topped $26,000.
“The family is so thankful for support, love, prayers, donations,” Carbello says. “The love that people just keep giving it’s been amazing, and they’re very overwhelmed.”