Last month, a Southwest Florida family lost their home to a fire. And, in the days following the fire, what was left of their home was stolen by looters. So, this weekend, community members gathered to help the family in their time of need.
Carol Bloom and Peter Lance were inside their Bonita Springs home with their four children when their house suddenly burst into flames in January.
“We truly lost everything,” Lance said. “We got the kids out, got the baby out, then I went and got the dog, and the house was fully engulfed.”
So both friends and strangers Came together Sunday to provide continued support. Ralph’s Place in Cape Coral hosted a benefit that included live music, auctions and raffles to help this family get back on their feet.
“As a citizen, a person involved in the community, my heart goes out,” Michael Ames said. “I would do it for anyone.”
The family is thankful no one was hurt in the fire, but they all still suffered a loss.
“It was just gone,” Lance said. “I just stood there and watched it burn, couldn’t do nothing.”
So the support from others came as a welcomed surprise. Nearly one month after the house fire, the family moved from a hotel to a rental home paid in full by Johnsonville sausage company for the next year, all thanks to generous donors in the community.
“I don’t even have the words,” Bloom said. “I can’t be thankful enough.”
Community members we spoke to were more than enthusiastic about their willingness to help friends and neighbors in a time of need.
“It’s just the right thing to do,”” Laura Weaver said. “We just love them. We’ve been trying to help them.”
The community effort was made possible by Johnsonville sausage company, Nicole Harvey and staff of Ralph’s Place, Valerie’s lounge, the American Legion Post 303, the Legion Riders, Taco Club , The Lock Up Self Storage, 91.5 FM, Holiay Inn Express and friends and family.
The fire department says faulty wiring caused the house fire. We are still waiting to hear how much money the benefit raised for the family.
“It’s really nice to know that there’s still good people in the world,” said.