“Country for a Cause” helps family devastated by house fire in Tucson

“Country for a Cause” helps family devastated by house fire in Tucson
Local musicians rallied around the family at a benefit concert Sunday night. (Source: Kimberly Othic)

TUCSON, Ariz. (KOLD News 13) - Most local musicians will tell you the talent community in Tucson is tight-knit. So, when a country music fan’s home went up in flames last week, a group of performers got together to help her rise from the wreckage.

On Sunday night, 10 performers took to the stage at Saguaro Corners. The “Country for a Cause” benefit was held in support of Kimberly Othic and her two teenage boys who lost everything in a house fire.

On Monday, January 6th, Othic says she had just returned home from a dinner out with her family when she noticed something wasn’t right.

“My boyfriend felt the ceiling and it was hot and we smelled a really weird thing; it was like burning plastic,” she said.

Othic says an electrical fire had started in the ceiling. The whole family, along with their dogs, quickly escaped.

“By the time the fire department got there, the whole house - the whole roof - was on fire,” she said.

The fire spread to her children’s room before it was put out. Othic’s two sons lost everything: their clothes, shoes, beds, furniture, electronics, etc.

This tragedy struck during an already difficult time. Othic says she had just moved into the trailer four months ago, following her divorce.

“After 18 years marriage, that was the only thing I could get in my name," she said. “It's been a really rough year for my kids. [Now, with this fire] they don’t deserve it, I mean they are good kids. They don’t get in trouble; they are sweet kids.”

Othic says she didn’t have renter’s insurance. Now forced to move again, she is just thankful things weren’t worse.

“[If we hadn’t gone out to dinner, I would have been working and] my son would have been playing Xbox with his headphones on,” said Othic. “I was told by the firefighters, within two minutes, whoever was in that bedroom would not have made it out.”

She made a post on Facebook about the fire and it struck a chord with Jessica Northey-Shaw.

“My husband and I have two boys; 14 and 18 [years old],” said Northey-Shaw. “[Othic] has two sons; 14 and 17 [years old].”

So, Northey-Shaw decided to organize the fundraiser.

“Every single person I contacted said yes,” she said.

Hundreds of people stopped by, opening their hearts and wallets.

“It’s amazing this many people came out throughout the day!” said Billy Shaw, one of the performers.

“There are people that don’t have a lot, but they will give their last nickel to help others,” said Northey-Shaw.

Othic, moved to tears, says she has never felt so blessed.

The Owner of Saguaro Corners tells us nearly $2,000 was raised from the benefit.

Those who still want to help can contact Jessica Northey-Shaw at 520-505-1723.

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