Heber City community helps family that lost historic heirloom home in fire
HEBER CITY, Utah — A Heber family is thanking the community after a house that has been passed down through the family for generations over 100 years burned down in a fire over the weekend.
The family is trying to figure out what’s next, and on Monday returned to the spot where they watched their house burn just two days prior.
Taking shade in the neighbor’s yard next door, Allyson Larson spent her Labor Day holiday filled with stress.
“It’s Labor Day, but we have no shower, we have no bathroom,” Larson said. “You can’t go in the house because it’s ruined.”
Yellow caution tape blocked off the property, but the damage was apparent from the sidewalk. All of the windows were boarded up and the home’s roof had collapsed in the back. The outside walls were covered with black soot, and water still soaked the driveway.
Larson explained that she and her granddaughters left their home Saturday afternoon, and an hour later, they got a call that the garage caught fire. It spread to the rest of the home.
“I’m like, it can’t be true, I was just there!” she recounted.
Wasatch firefighters responded, saving one of their cats — a kitten — that was trapped in the home. The Larsons’ second cat ran away and resurfaced later on.
Larson said the fire department told her the fire started somewhere in the garage, but they’re still figuring out the exact cause.
The cats are all the Larsons have left.
“Everything you own’s in there, you know, and now it’s all gone,” Larson said. “I told somebody, ‘You don’t know what you have until it’s gone.'”
What Allyson lost dates back over 100 years.
“My great-grandfather had a blacksmith shop there,” she explained.
She believed that was in the early 1900s.
Her parents ended up with the home in the 1970s, raising Allyson and her sister there.
The house was passed down to Allyson and she has lived there for the past three decades.
At the time of the fire, three generations were living in the historic family house, including Allyson’s husband, daughter, and three granddaughters. Now, all of that is gone.
“I just don’t know what to say, and I’m never a loss for words. But I am now,” Larson said.
As Larson and her family find somewhere else to live, they’re finding that the community’s been quick to jump in and help.
On Monday afternoon, a few neighbors and community members stopped by to give Allyson clothing donations, gift cards, cash for the granddaughters to buy clothes for school, and cards with prayers and well wishes.
In addition to the donations that have been coming in, a GoFundMe* has been set up to help Larson and her family recover from the fire.
One man on a motorcycle even brought cat nip treats for the family’s two kitties.
The stress Allyson had been feeling all day started to turn into gratitude.
“I’ve got good neighbors,” she said, adding with a smile, “that’s what matters.”
*KSL TV does not assure that the money deposited to the account will be applied for the benefit of the persons named as beneficiaries. If you are considering a deposit to the account, you should consult your own advisors and otherwise proceed at your own risk.
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