As residents of Loma Rica threatened by the North Complex Fires (Bear Fire and Willow Fire), my wife and I, along with our two horses were ordered to evacuate the area just after midnight on Wednesday, Sept. 9.

Being veterans of the Cascade Fire evacuation of 2017, we were prepared and ready to go and headed into Yuba City to the evacuation center at the Fairgrounds as we were instructed. We hadn’t been there much more than 7-8 hours when we were told that we, and the horses, would have to leave the “designated evacuation center” because they needed it for a CDF fire camp. The horses could go to the Sutter County Sheriff’s Posse Arena but there was nowhere anyone knew where we could go for camping (the Posse’s arena wasn’t available this year, unlike the Cascade Fire). 

We finally came across a gentleman, Mr. John Nicoletti, who coincidentally was getting the word out about available camping for evacuees at the Habitat for Humanity ReStore site in Marysville. Habitat had cordoned off areas of their large parking lot to be used for evacuee camping and set up access to showers as well.

John and the staff were a breath of fresh air. They were so warm and welcoming and incredibly helpful with anything we could have needed (including snacks, water, drinks, coffee, food, towels, and sheets). As it turned out, we relocated again before the day was out to the Red Cross designated camping area at Garden Highway/ Franklin Rd. but certainly not because of any lack of hospitality on John Nicoletti and Habitat’s part. 

So here’s a big shoutout to John and his crew at Habitat: Thank you – all of you and also to all of the volunteers out there who were there for us when we needed it, including the Yuba/Sutter Fairground Barn Staff, the Sutter County Posse people taking such good care of our horses at their arena and the Red Cross and volunteers at the camping area!

 

Peter Langdon,

Loma Rica

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