It’s no secret that last week was beyond traumatic for all of San Diego. The Firestorm of 2007 threatened lives, brought houses to the ground and wreaked havoc on our amazing city. And while it’s been devastating, this horrible time has proven one thing: San Diego really IS America’s Finest City. We pulled together to protect lives and property, to comfort, shelter and love those who suffered. This Weekly is a tribute to you all.
While the men and women in yellow fought the flames, hundreds of incredible humanitarians volunteered at the many shelters popping up around the county. TJ T witnessed a remarkable sight at The Rock Church that included an extraordinary receiving line for donations with hundreds of bright, smiling volunteers accepting goods, encouraging new arrivals, creating an atmosphere of hope and friendship. "I’m blown away by your dedication, Rock Church, and if there is ever a place that seemed to enact the values of sharing, love, and Christian service, it was the Rock on that smoky, hazy, Tuesday." Paul S witnessed the owner of "San Diego Ice Co dropping off 12,000 lbs of ice at Qualcomm Stadium to use for cold water and beverages and noted that at least 1000 boxes of Krispy Kreme Donuts were dropped off for breakfast and Subway sandwiches were dropped off regularly." Our own Lins C was just one of the many who found shelter at Qualcomm Stadium.
Many companies also jumped in and donated services to help fire victims. Tiffany S shares, "Office Depot is offering free Internet and fax services to evacuees, a unique way to extend a hand." The Salvation Army is offering free clothing to anyone who needs it and is taking monetary donations for the relief effort (make sure to note 2007 Firestorm San Diego on your donation form). The American Red Cross even implemented their "Safe and Well" web site, urging all those who have evacuated or who expect to evacuate Southern California’s wildfires to register their well-being here.
The Yelp community even came together to support our own community member Erin O, who lost her family home in Rancho Bernardo. Spearheaded by Rainier T, "Strangers" from across the country became friends when they opened their hearts and offered a virtual hug to Erin and her family through the donation thread. Truly amazing.
Last but not least, there really are no words to describe the amazing efforts of every firefighter working to contain the fires. The high temperatures, fast-paced winds, the smoke, the countless sleepless hours while you braved the flames… you are our heroes, the epitome of strength and courage.
Our thoughts and prayers are with you, San Diego.
If you have any questions or comments about this week’s weekly, please email firstname.lastname@example.org.
Yelper Erin O. hugs her mother, Patricia; father, Patrick; and sister
Lauren in front of the remains of her parents’ Rancho Bernardo home.
Photo credit: Don Kohlbauer / The Union Tribune