DALLAS (CBSDFW.COM) – For those who lost everything in a deadly seven-alarm fire this week, the community outpouring of support couldn’t have come sooner.
Donations are pouring for residents of the at the four-story Preston Place condos in the 6200 block of West Northwest Highway, as investigators still search for answers. Park Cities Baptist Church staff has seen a flurry of activity since before the fire was even extinguished.
“Our driveway has been full of cars. Every time you look up there’ s a new line of cars driving through dropping off,” says Reverend Damon Berry of Park Cities Baptist Church.
For donors, the church’s willingness to help is a blessing.
“Two sets of dishes, some clothes and bags to carry. We just think it’s a wonderful thing that they’re doing,” says donor Ruthanne Cubstead.
Five rooms – full, and more donations overflowing into the hallways. There are the usual items – clothes and food – and the unusual inside the church.
“I’ve seen everything from adult diapers to backpacks, dishes to a 50 pound bag of rice,” says Rev. Berry.
Some people have even donated vacant apartments…
The fire took the life of 89-year-old Jacqueline McDonald and left about 100 people homeless. Many residents don’t even know if they will ever see their cars, which are still in the complex’s garage.
Patrick Nolan with Nolan Management says they are taking bids from demolition companies, who will have to hire engineers to determine if the garage is safe. Fire investigators say the cause of the blaze is still under investigation, but nothing is ruled out.
Park Cities Baptist, which is working with the Red Cross, says there’s a community-wide recognition of the tragedy’s scope.
“We’ve been able to connect some of the families that did lose everything they own. There’s a lot to replace, and some things can’t be replaced,” says Rev. Berry.
“We just feel like we need to help these people. They’ve lost everything. It’s just so sad,” says Cubstead.
The next step is for volunteers to begin the process of sorting through the donations and then distributing them.