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Letter: Apartment fire victim 'forever grateful' for emergency response

‘I hope we never have to meet again,’ writes a North Van City resident in her letter of thanks to firefighters and North Shore Emergency Management
Several renters are still searching for housing following an early morning fire on Dec. 13 at an apartment building at 260 East 12th St. in the City of North Vancouver that displaced about 70 residents. | NV RCMP

Dear Editor:

Re: Families Displaced by North Van Apartment Fires Still Searching for Housing, Jan. 13 news story.

As one of the people affected by one of the fires you’re reporting on, I would like to weigh in.

It was a terrifying thing to see those flames coming out the roof of the building on East 12th so early in the morning, especially for those living closest to the fire zone. I must admit I prayed that the firefighters would excel at keeping the fire contained to the area where it was involved and not on my side of the building, and I’m forever grateful for that. Yet my heart aches for those directly affected by the fire and hope their losses aren’t too great to recover from.

I have been one of the fortunate who was able to secure a new apartment, albeit smaller and more expensive. It was pure luck to happen to drive by the building and see a “For Rent” sign. I parked right away and ran over to call the number listed, and was able to see the apartment that very hour. I still shake my head in amazement that had I taken a different route, I might very well still be homeless. I thank my parents for taking me in and those family and friends who offered to put me up. To the firefighters, I offer my sincere thanks for their heroic efforts, and to North Shore Emergency Management for their generous support and kindness the last few weeks. Both these groups are dedicated to what they do and do it exceedingly well. Please forgive me for saying: I hope we never have to meet again. I’m sure you understand.

Leslie Richardson
City of North Vancouver

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