I had read about this yesterday on my Devon Rex mailing list, but the details were still sketchy. Sadly, today, more is known.
For those of us who have watched the fires in Bastrop (and really anyone who has ever had a home in the path of a wildfire) we've all known that when homes and businesses got in the way, many times there would still be animals left inside who hadn't made it out during evacuations.
For a longtime pair of Devon Rex breeders, this came home in the most haunting and horrible way.
Joan and Louis Simmons had left their home in the Bastrop area over the Labor Day weekend to visit relatives. They came home to a Do Not Cross line set up by rescue teams responsible for evacuating the area. They were not allowed to return to home...a home that still held their cats and four dogs. Joan experienced a cardiac event and was taken to an area hospital. Meanwhile, no one knew what the fate of their homes or animals would be.
Today we know. And a more horrible situation I just can't imagine. :(
Terri O'Shea of the Devon Rex Rescue League sent the following to the mailing list:
Good Afternoon Devon World,
It is with tears in my eyes and deep sorrow in my heart that I write to
you today. I just got off of the phone with Louis Simmons and the news is
not good. The Texas Wildfires have taken their home and all of their
animals. They just got word that their house was totally engulfed and
burned to the ground. Their cats were caged and there was no escape. They
also lost their 2 poodles, their sister's dog who was at their house and a
French Bulldog that had been willed to them when Walt and Carol passed away.
The only possessions that they now have are the clothes that they were
wearing. They have lost everything. Joan remains in the hospital but had a
problem with her blood sugar after the news and has been moved to the ICU.
These wonderful people have been anchors in the Devon community for
decades. They have always been there for any devon in need or in rescue.
It is our turn to be there for them. We are setting up a fundraiser to help
them defray some of the costs of displacement during this horrible time.
Please find it in your heart to share some of your fortune in this moment of
Contributions can be sent through PayPal through the DRRL at
firstname.lastname@example.org or mailed directly to me at 916 Pecore St,
Houston, TX, 77009. Please make sure you earmark the donation for Joan and
Louis in the notes section in Paypal or the memo section of your check.
Please, reach as deeply as you can. Let's make a difference!