CLAUDE, TX (KFDA) - In some regions of our country, people tend to live reclusively and simply don’t share life with neighbors. In our part of the world, the atmosphere is much different as a family new to one of our communities recently experienced. We find that story in this week’s Good News with Doppler Dave.
One of the greatest fears of a parent is waking up to a house on fire with your children inside. That’s exactly what happened recently to a young couple new to the community of Claude.
Kaitlyn Clark shared her story with me saying, “It was absolutely terrifying. The only thing as a mother that you are concerned with is getting your children out alive. When I sat up it was super smoky, I couldn’t see in front of my face. I just grabbed my kids and got out as fast as I could. It was terrifying. It was unbelievably hot and whenever you can’t see in front of your face it’s scary. When I grabbed my children and I was running out the door, the door actually sucked shut on my oldest child. It did burn my oldest son’s hair.”
In many cases, victims of fire find themselves having lost everything they own--nowhere to live, nowhere to go and a dramatic disruption in life. Well, apparently not if you live in Claude.
“We were only in the hospital for maybe three hours,” Kaitlyn recalled. “When we got back to Claude this whole community had come together. They had us in the hotel, they had this rental house, they had it lined up for us.”
Amazingly, within just hours, the good folks of Claude had rallied and had a house ready to move into and furnished.
“Well, it was almost instantaneous,” explained Heather Morris, a Claude resident and community volunteer. “Their neighbors are the first people they went to. They got the in the house, they instantly promised to get them into a hotel room that night. They went to the hospital and it came out on Facebook.”
Almost like a bridal registry system, the family’s needs were organized, listed and posted for the community to jump in and assist.
Heather added, “Well, what happened was the community member who put the Facebook page together compiled a list of just basic needs. Then as it went and I spent more time with the family, we added or took away as the needs were met.”
“This couch that I’m sitting on is actually one of the firefighter’s that put my house out--it was in his living room,” Kaitlyn added. “They had trailers, they had three trailers parked out front, they had couches, they had tables, they had beds. They had everything for us.”
Nick Carpenter, the children’s father told me, “The next morning we were pretty much set back up again and, I mean, it was just a wonderful thing.”
The immediate and generous response of aid and the expression of love from their new community has greatly impacted the family and has changed their outlook on life.
“It gave me hope in humanity again,” Kaitlyn expressed. “It really did.”
Her son, Christopher, made sure I knew this: “Yeah, the firefighters helped me!”
“It’s like one big family,” said Heather Morris, speaking of the Claude community atmosphere. “We may bicker among each other but the minute someone has a problem, then everybody just takes care of their people”.
Kaitlyn graciously expressed, "Thank you! You have saved my live, my kids lives and you have given us a sense of normalcy back."
You know, with a fire, a home and belongings can be just burned down to ashes--but in Claude, Texas, hope in mankind is still alive and well. That’s some good news.