As a child, Patti Mondor nearly lost her mom in a fire.
With that memory in mind, and the fact the Vernon woman knows a couple of the residents, Mondor has established a trust fund for the victims of the April 30 fire at a Vernon four-plex.
Five families – nine adults and nine children – were living in the complex in the 3500 block of 25th Avenue that was destroyed by an early-morning fire that was reported around 4:30 a.m.
Everybody got out safely, but all of the families lost everything, and no one had any content insurance.
“My mom was just about burnt in a fire when I was a little girl, she was saved, unhurt, but would have been overcome by smoke had they not found her,” said Mondor, who volunteers her time with seniors and the SPCA.
“These things bother me. I can’t even look at burned buildings. This really touches my heart.
“I’m doing this not necessarily for the person we know in the complex. It’s specifically because there were children involved, and everybody lost everything.”
The trust fund has been set up with TD Canada Trust, and people wanting to make a donation can visit any TD Canada Trust branch and make the deposit to the 25th Avenue Fire Victims Account.
Anybody wishing to drop off household articles or clothing, toys or electronics can do so at the Salvation Army store on 27th Street, beside Subway.
Fire investigators and police continue to investigate the fire, which has been dubbed suspicious.
Fire officials said the blaze started outside the complex.