On Talk of the Bay, Tuesday September 2, 2020 Christine Barrington interviews Scotts Valley Councilwoman Donna Lind who has served the city as a council member for 12 years, and as a Police Woman for 40. She is also President of the Fallen Officers Foundation. The breadth and depth of her service to this region gives her unique position to understand what First Responders are experiencing and what they might need from the community at this time.
With the CZU Complex Fire Base Camp situated in Scotts Valley, Donna shares what it is like at central command where a small city has arisen to coordinate services required to fight the blaze. Donna encourages community members to NOT bring food or supplies to Base Camp. Supplies are better directed to community members who have been evacuated or lost their homes.
If you would like to celebrate and support First Responders Donna recommends the following:
Write a Thank You Card! Send it to the following address: Cal Fire CZU Headquarters, 6059 HWY 9, Felton CA 95018. Cards are greatly appreciated and really put wind under the wings of these hardworking men and woman.
Create a Banner and hang it, make a sign and post it along the road, or find a another creative way to have it be seen. These banners truly cheer our officers.
The Fallen Officer Foundation is terrific way to support First Responders. It is not just for First Responders who have passed away. Any donations directed to Fire or Police Officers impacted by the fires will go directly to these people valiantly trying to protect our homes and forests.
Ben Lomond Fire Department – Fund raising activities support the purchase of fire and emergency rescue equipment. Donate directly at http://benlomondfd.com/auxiliary. There is a GO FUND ME page at the Ben Lomond Fire Department’s Facebook page.
Bonny Doon Fire and Rescue – BDRF is an all-volunteer first-responder unit. They respond from the Fall Creek Station on Empire Grade to emergencies in the Bonny Doon area. These include medical emergencies, motor vehicle accidents, injured hikers, mountain bikers or horseback riders, as well as both structure and wildland fires. Donate directly at https://www.bonnydoonfire.org/donate
Boulder Creek Fire Department – Donations go to the purchase of new rescue and medical equipment. Donate directly at https://bcfd.com/donate
Felton Fire Department – All of the profits raised from fundraisers are used to purchase emergency and fire equipment that the Fire Department needs, including fire hoses, wildland fire equipment, Jaws of Life, rescue harnesses, saws, large animal rescue equipment, as well as providing the funds for each new volunteer firefighter’s uniform. Donate directly at https://feltonfire.com/auxillary
A handful of firefighters living within a few miles of one another all lost their homes to the CZU fire.
We’re all crying together’: Firefighters battling the CZU fire lose own homes in Santa Cruz Mountains. (The following is an excerpt from a story about a Fire Fighter who lost his home).
His wife was on the other line. An evacuation warning had just been issued for their neighborhood tucked away in the Santa Cruz Mountains, and sheriff’s deputies were going house to house in the middle of the night telling people they needed to leave.
Serna, who has spent the last three decades fighting wildfires and protecting strangers’ homes across California, told her what he would tell anyone forced to flee from the flames of a fast-moving blaze: Grab the important things — heirlooms, pictures, documents — and don’t worry about anything else.
But as he knows all too well, there will always be those mementos you can’t put a price tag on but don’t think to grab until it’s too late.
And for Serna and his wife Gina, it would be too late.
Just days after his crew valiantly tried to fend off flames from homes in Monterey County, the CZU August Lightning Complex Fire incinerated his cabin Aug. 19 on Swanton Road just north of Davenport, along with most of his neighbors’ homes.
“When you deal with it from the other side, there’s always a certain amount of empathy you have for people who have lost everything,” said Serna, a firefighter with the Presidio of Monterey Fire Department. “But that amplifies when you now understand — when you lose everything and feel what they were feeling and go through what you saw others go through.”
With some of the largest wildfires in California history burning at the same time, Serna is just one of many firefighters battling the blazes on one front while suffering devastating first-hand losses on the home front.