Fund established for victims of Fruitvale fire

A fund has been established to help a Fruitvale family of four whose home was destroyed in a fire Thursday, just under a week after the family closed on the purchase of the home.

Barbara Ball of Grand Junction, whose husband sold the single-story property at 3049 F 3/4 Road to the new owners on June 10, said contributions can be made at any Wells Fargo Bank branch to the Pena Family Relief Fund. A husband, wife, their 3-year-old boy and 2-year-old girl, lost everything in the fire, Ball said.

“Today (Thursday) was the girl’s birthday,” Ball said.

Clifton Fire Department Assistant Chief Greg Martin said while investigators haven’t made a final determination, the fire appeared to be accidental. It started in a detached shed at the rear of the property, he said.

Firefighters were called just after midnight Thursday after the blaze, which was fed by several exploding propane bottles, spread from the shed to a nearby truck, eventually reaching a carport attached to the house, Martin said.

“The house was totally involved when our first engine arrived,” he said.

The Grand Junction Fire Department was called to assist, while the displaced family declined help from Western Colorado Red Cross volunteers and stayed with friends, Martin said.

Total damage is estimated at $100,000, Martin said.


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