A family is trying to rebuild following a Thursday evening fire on Greenwell Street in central Maple Ridge.
Kim Wise was at her sister Suzanne Armstrong’s home when the fire began at about 8 p.m. They’d had smelled something burning earlier.
“We went downstairs … we just ran out with whatever we had in our hands,” Wise said.
Wise, Suzanne, and her three kids and husband Don escaped the fire with their lives, but nothing else.
“No wallets, no credit cards,” some of the cellphones were left inside to be melted as was the backyard pool from the intense heat which turned the home into a shell of blackened beams.
“All of a sudden, your whole life is gone in five minutes,” Kim said.
She’s helping her sister put her life back together. But that process started within minutes of the family escaping the blaze because people were already offering to help out.
“The neighbours have been wonderful. They brought in shoes, jackets, drinks, water – very good neighbours,” Wise said.
The family was put up in a hotel and is now trying to get back to normal and get vehicles and get ready for back to school.
The house was insured. Firefighters haven’t yet identified a cause.