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HomeMoneyKelowna senior considers living in car after losing everything in fire

Kelowna senior considers living in car after losing everything in fire

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Debra Charlton lived in her mobile home in southeast Kelowna for 16 years before fire consumed the structure last week.

The 68-year-old senior shared the home with her daughter, Amy Logan, 45.

“Everything I owned was in there for 16 years,” an emotional Charlton told Global News.

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“I don’t even know. I don’t even know how to move to tomorrow,” Logan said.

The home in the 4300 block of Jaud Road went up in flames on Sept. 7, around 4:30 a.m.

Charlton was out of town at the time and Logan was staying with a friend.

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Charlton said losing important keepsakes has taken a big toll on her.

“My parents’ ashes, my brother’s ashes, my husband’s ashes, my photo albums. That was the first thing that came to me,” Charlton said.


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What made the loss more difficult, though, is that the two had no insurance.

“I had house insurance all along, but when I went to renew the insurance last time, it went up from $500 to $1,100. And I did not have the money to do it,” she said.

Charlton is on a fixed income and Logan, who says she has a brain injury, is on disability.

For the past week, the two have been staying in a hotel, which was covered first by Emergency Support Services and then the Red Cross.

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That support, however, has come to an end.

“This morning, it ran out,” Charlton said. “I have to check out at 1 o’clock today.”

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With no family around and long wait lists for affordable housing, Charlton said she’s been told by social agencies to consider staying at a homeless shelter.

“I’ve never stayed in a homeless shelter,” she said. “That’s a walk of life I know nothing about. The thought of even staying in one scares me.”

When asked where she would be staying on Thursday night, Charlton said likely in her car.

The pair is also facing another dilemma: The costly clean-up of what’s left of the mobile home and pad they lease.

“My landlord said I can keep the property, but I am responsible for cleaning this up and he wants it done now,” she said.  “I have no money.”


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Charlton said it’s left her with no choice but to make an appeal to the community for help.

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“I need a place to live right now. My daughter and I need a place to live right now,” she said. “And we need to find some disaster relief that will help clean this up.”

The fire started at the back of the mobile home, quite possibly in the master bedroom but with so much damage, fire investigators were unable to determine an exact cause.”


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Both Charlton and Logan are now not only pleading for help but also reminding everyone to always have insurance.

“If anyone doesn’t, they should because I never thought this would happen to me,” said Logan. “And look at where I am today.”

If anyone would like to help the pair, contact them by email.

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© 2022 Global News, a division of Corus Entertainment Inc.





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