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Family of 9 loses home in fire, mother and father speak out

Mother Blanca Mancinas lost her family's home and everything they owned when their house caught fire on September 22 in Desert Hot Springs. The home now filled with rubble and ash.

"There's times where I feel stuck and then like there's times where I just want to just want to break down and cry," said Marcinas. "Like [the kids] being scared. Everything they had went up in flames... It's just devastating and I kind of feel like- like a failure right now. Like I'm failing them."

Firefighters said when they arrived to the scene, the family's house was completely taken over by the flames. It took firefighters about an hour to put it out. Cal Fire said a family of 9 lived in the home, three adults and six children. One of the kids only a month old. Officals said that everyone was able to get out without any injuries.

The father, William Harlow, was at the house salvaging anything he could find.

"Just knowing that we have to start all over again, and find a new place to stay, and then my kids are kind of shook up," said Harlow.

There was so much debris, Harlow could barely walk through it. The house now a hollow shell of what it used to be. 

"You could dress up a home you can make it looks so pretty but it's nothing if there's no kids running around and laughing," said Marcinas.

The family is staying at a motel in the mean time. Missing the place they called home, however, staying grateful for all the support they have received from the community. After the incident, the American Red Cross stepped up to assist the family. Also, a fundraiser page was set up to help the family.

Click here to visit the family's GoFundMe page to donate

"We seriously lost everything but we’re alive so thank the LORD for that. I would like to ask for help to be able to get through this as we were not prepared for something like this and get into another home so my children can be safe," reads the post by the family. "I'm grateful for everyone that helped out the day it happened I’m truly blessed to be surrounded by caring people n good neighbors… right now my baby needs diapers n wipes and formula. Thank you guys and God Bless."

There is still no word on what caused the fire

"I'm just grateful I don't- I don't feel like I'm alone in this and like people have really made me feel like welcomed," said Marcinas.

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Marian Bouchot

Marian Bouchot is the weekend morning anchor and a reporter for KESQ News Channel 3. Learn more about Marian here.


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