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Red Cross helps Lake Nebagamon family who lost home in fire

Severe weather left two Northland families homeless Tuesday in separate incidences, and the Red Cross responded to help eight people after the storms.

Severe weather left two Northland families homeless Tuesday in separate incidences, and the Red Cross responded to help eight people after the storms.

The Northland Chapter of the American Red Cross is helping a family of six, including five children, who were left homeless after their Lake Nebagamon home burned Tuesday as the result of a suspected lightning strike.

The Lake Nebagamon Volunteer Fire Department responded to the fire call for the home on Pooler Road at 5 p.m. Tuesday night. By the time they arrived, the structure was fully engulfed. The single-family home was a total loss, according to firefighter Raymond Mock, but no injuries were reported.

"We even saved the dog," Mock said. The family was not home when the fire started and the cause of the blaze remains under investigation.

Volunteer firefighters from Bennett and Highland also responded to the blaze, which allowed firefighters to work in shifts until they cleared the scene at 10:30 p.m. Due to the wet weather and sandy ground, a Highland fire truck got stuck at the scene and was extricated by a tow truck. A Lake Nebagamon fire truck was also stuck briefly, Mock said, but firefighters were able to cut through some trees to get it out.

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Red Cross volunteers met with the family Wednesday to determine what assistance is needed.

Also Tuesday, the Northland Chapter assisted several families after three homes in Virginia, Minn. burned as the result of a garage fire.

Red Cross disaster relief includes emergency lodging, food, clothing, medicine, and medical supplies. Help is provided in the form of cash cards for use in local businesses, to encourage clients to participate in their own recovery. In this way the Northland Chapter also contributes as much as $100,000 annually to area economies.

Over half of those helped by the Red Cross each year are younger than 18, according to the chapter's executive director, Judy Hanne Gonzalez, who urges families to contact the Red Cross to learn how to develop a personal disaster plan.

The Northland Chapter of the American Red Cross, which responds to about 100 local emergencies each year, is accepting donations now. You can help victims of these and other local disasters by sending gifts to the Northland Chapter of the American Red Cross, 2524 Maple Grove Road, Duluth, MN 55811. More information about how to help is available at (218) 722-0071 or by visiting www.redcrossnorthland.org .

Related Topics: DOUGLAS COUNTYWEATHER
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