San Diego

Woman Steps up to Help Family Displaced in Oak Park House Fire

An El Cajon woman is stepping up to help a family of 17 who lost everything after a fire sparked inside their home in Oak Park. 

"The first thing that came to my mind when I saw the fire is, 'What can I do to help this family?'" said Mitzi Doan.

Doan said she is in the process of re-doing her living room. She has a couch, a love seat, three end tables, three lamps, a coffee table, and dishes that she doesn't need anymore.

"If I can't help someone, what am I here for?" she said.

On Friday, Doan met Daniela Garcia, a mother of three who was one of the victims of the fire.

Garcia's family lived in the duplex on 53rd street with her sister’s family. The family's home went up in flames Tuesday morning around 4:30 a.m.

All 17 family members, including 12 children, were able to escape the house without any injuries. But the are now displaced and everything they owned, destroyed in the fire.

But Garcia told NBC 7 the community has been reaching out to help.

"Strangers just keep calling us, willing to donate," Garcia said.

She said her sons will head back to school Monday and people have donated all the back-to-school supplies they need. She added that they are actually stockpiled for next year, too.

Garcia and her family still have a long way to go to get back to normal. But she said she no longer feels that sense of hopelessness she had when she watched her home burn.

"I feel blessed," she said.

A GoFundMe page has been set up for the family.

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