Neighbors help family driven from home by fire |

Neighbors help family driven from home by fire

Students and administrators gather around Tyler Hendrix (first row, gray shirt) and are raising funds for his family whose home was partially destroyed by fire last Saturday. So far they have raised $1250 and if you would like to donate you can do so at Pau-Wa-Lu Middle School or visit this link:
Brad Coman |


Donations can be made by visiting or call Jenifer McLaughlin.

Over the Thanksgiving holiday the Hendrix family suffered a devastating loss when a fire erupted in their home.

The family of five left to do some shopping when their home caught fire causing complete loss to the kitchen and leaving the remainder of the home smoke and water damaged. The fire also claimed the life of their newest family pet, Smokey, who they adopted in October of this year.

According to reports the fire was most likely caused when Smokey jumped up to get the trash that was put out of his reach on the stove top. Authorities said the dog must have nudged the knob that turns on the stove.

“We are just trying to get them support and help while they get their house fixed,” said Jennifer McLaughlin, owner of Sierra Event Rentals who has stepped up to help the family in their time of need.

According to authorities it will be 6 to 8 months before the family will be able to return to their home. In the mean time the family is residing in a hotel until a rental home is available to them, however due to the smoke damage their belongings will not be able to come with them.

McLaughlin said couches, beds and basic household items are most needed for the family.

“We are asking for monetary donations for them at this time to help them cover their unexpected costs of displacement and items that will not be covered by insurance,” she said.

McLaughlin said the community has been rallying together to provide whatever they can for the family.

“The support of the community has been great,” she said. “A couple of different avenues have come together to help.”

Douglas County School District is one of those avenues.

“We are a community and a Distrcit that always takes care of our own and have time and time again come to the assistance of those in need,” said Keith Lewis of the Douglas County School District. “Whatever assistance anyone might be able to provide, I know they are a very humble family and are truly grateful.”

Meneley Elementary has put together care packages for the family and Paw Lu Middle School raised approximately $1,200 during a fundraiser they held Thursday, said McLauglin.

She added that Pau Wa Lu Middle School leadership students will be selling hot chocolate during the Parade of Lights in front of the C.O.D. Casino as a fundraiser for the family.

The generosity of the community and friends has helped the family moved forward the best they can, said Jessica Hendrix,

“Our life was turned upside down on Nov. 26 and we didn’t know what to do until generous friends started stepping in and guiding us in the proper direction,” said Hendrix. “ Because of them, we are able to start over the best we can.”