On Dec. 28, a single mother and her two daughters lost everything they owned in a house fire at 2178 Pinnacles Rd.
Christy Williams was alone at the home the morning the fire began. Her daughters, 12-year-old Makiya Neadow and nine-year-old Jaycee Neadow, were at their grandmother’s home, and were not on the scene when the fire took over their home.
Williams managed to escape in only her housecoat and slippers, but only after she desperately tried to search for her kitten, which she could hear crying somewhere in the home. As the rooms rapidly filled with overwhelming heat and smoke, she was forced to exit the premises without finding her pet.
The speed of the fire made it impossible for Williams to save anything, and she could only stand by and watch as all she cherished was swallowed up by flames.
It is believed the cause of the fire was a short in the heat-tape applied to frozen pipes in the home. The tape was applied on Dec. 27, and around 10:50 a.m. on Dec. 28, smoke began billowing out of the area. However, this hasn’t yet been confirmed.
Luckily, none of the outbuildings were effected by the fire.
So soon after Christmas, the family’s terrible experience was met with incredible support from the Quesnel community. Some have even made efforts to replace the girls’ Christmas presents.
A volunteer disaster relief group, The Postmen, offered its services to reach out for help, to collect items and seek financial support.
Two of the local group members – Dave Llewellyn and Bea Peters – have been offering many hours of help and effort to collect needed items for the family.
“The drive has been going very well,” Llewellyn says.
“[Because of] all your heartfelt contributions and giving spirit, we are able to help them out a lot.”
Jo-Anne Rea, Williams’ mother, says that on that first day, she answered approximately 500 people reaching out to help.
Rea was on the phone and online immediately to spearhead a support network for her daughter and granddaughters.
Losing a home so soon after Christmas and in the middle of winter has been a heartbreaking and terrifying ordeal for the family, she adds.
“The donations have been overwhelming. The outpouring of love and help and kindness has been amazing.”
The Quesnel community donated a generous amount of clothing items for all three of them, as well as furniture and other necessities, along with pre-paid Visa cards and gift cards from various merchants in Quesnel.
A GoFundMe page has also been started for the family, and can be found at: www.gofundme.com/single-mom-of-2-loses-home-to-fire
Williams has been given accommodations through Emergency Social Services Quesnel, and her daughters have been staying with their father.
Luckily, thanks to the help of a family friend, Williams and her girls were able to find a home in Kersley quickly after the tragedy.
The home is still under renovations, but the donations are slowly being moved in, from Llewellyn’s shop and kitchen.
The family is still in need of some household items, including a kettle, dresser, coffee and side tables, TV stand, toaster, cutlery and cooking knives, cookware, mixing bowls, cutting board and measuring utensils.
No more clothes are required.
If you’re able to donate any of these items or would like to help, please contact Dave Llewellyn at 250-983-5485, or Bea Peters at 250-255-0469.