Tucson family helping Sonoma County wildfire evacuees

Tucson family helping Sonoma County wildfire evacuees
(Source: Tucson News Now)
(Source: Tucson News Now)

TUCSON, AZ (Tucson News Now) - As the death toll rises in the northern California wildfires, a Tucson family is taking action to help evacuees.

The fires have destroyed more than 220,000 acres, and 5,700 homes and businesses. More than 90,000 people have been displaced and at least 35 people have died.

"It's heartbreaking," donation organizer, David Basurto said.

Flames have ripped through trees and consumed homes, just north of San Francisco. The wildfires are among the deadliest in California history.

"We were devastated when we heard this happening and this is one of the quickest things we could think of to do," Basurto said.

Basurto lives in Tucson and has family in Sonoma County. His relatives had to evacuate and sent him pictures of the damage in their neighborhood. Basurto felt compelled to do something, and started collecting supplies for the evacuees. He said strangers have also stepped in to help.

"We don't have much, but here we are doing what we can to help people over there," Angelica Orantez said.

"We've had seven local dentists so far - donate hundreds and hundreds of toothbrushes, boxes of toothbrushes and toothpaste. I mean they all stepped up really big," Norman Basurto said.

Now that the trailer is all loaded up, the Basurto's will be driving the nearly 1,000 miles to d rop off the supplies at an evacuee shelter in Sonoma County. They hope to arrive on Saturday afternoon. They will also share handwritten messages from those who donated, to let California know that Tucson cares.

"We're going to send our support and our love," Orantez said.

The Basurto's have set up a go fund me page here for "Sonoma Wildfire Relief:" https://www.gofundme.com/4k8e8r4

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