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Friends, neighbors help Citrus Heights family displaced after house fire

A home on Catamaran Drive in Citrus Heights is boarded up, following a fire on New Year’s Day. // M. Hazlip

By Mike Hazlip—
More than $10,000 has been raised so far by friends and neighbors coming together to help a Citrus Heights family displaced by a New Year’s Day fire.

The year is off to a rocky start for the Carda family, who saw their home and two vehicles destroyed in a Jan. 1 fire on Catamaran Drive. Neighbor Monica Newman organized a GoFundMe page asking the community for help. The page had raised $700 as of Wednesday night, while another page raised over $10,000.

“They made it out with the clothes on their backs and only 1 of their 3 pets,” Newman wrote on the fundraising page. “The twin 8 year old girls are okay but were terrified. Dad suffered some burns to his hands but is okay.”

Newman told The Sentinel in a phone call Wednesday she was a little reluctant to start the fundraising page at first, but other neighbors were looking for a way to help the Carda’s.

Newman, who lives across the street, said someone broke into the house just a few hours after the fire. She said construction crews left at about 3:30 a.m. and by about 5:50 a.m. a neighbor noticed the lock on the fence had been cut and the fence was open. Newman could not verify what was taken, if anything.

Metro Fire Capt. Chris Vestal told The Sentinel on Saturday that the blaze caused an estimated $150,000 in loss to the home. He said fire originated in the garage, with “an accidental but undetermined cause.”

Citrus Heights Police Lt. Michael Wells said officers investigated a report of a burglary on Jan. 2, where he said police found a board on the front door was unsecured. No further details were available, pending the completion of the burglary report.

Another GoFundMe page has been set up by Daniel Tyree. Tyree was unable to be reached Thursday, but identified himself as a friend of the Carda’s on the fundraising page he set up. That fundraiser had raised more than $11,000 by Wednesday night.

The Sentinel was unable to reach the Carda family for comment, but an update was posted to Tyree’s page on Wednesday.

“I just heard from Kimberly and thanks to the generosity of so many friends, family members and even people they have yet to meet, they no longer need any children’s clothing, toys or school supplies,” Tyree wrote. “The family wanted to sincerely thank you for your overwhelming support at their time of need and that your response has been heartwarming to the whole family.”

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