Community Stories

The Resiliency Fund is committed to honoring the historical legacy of the Central Sierra region by collecting community stories of the Creek Fire–and the unique histories that precede it– and preserving those stories through the Central Sierra Historical Society.

We are collecting stories of places before and after the Creek Fire, and/or of your experience during the Fire itself.

Samantha Legorreta

September 8th at 12:22am. My almost 5 year old is asleep in my bed because of a bad dream. My phone rings and I quickly grab it before it wakes her up. It’s my dad, responding to the text I had sent him only minutes before. “It’s gone, it’s all gone” is what he tells me when I pick up.
Read More »

Vince Wiggins

My name is Vince Wiggins, and my husband is Keith Davis. We bought 10 acres on Sharin Woods Rd in the spring of 2000. Sharin Woods means Sharing Woods. They left off the g from Sharing to make it sound more country or hillbilly like. As one neighbor told me years ago, “It means we’re sharin dah woods!”
Read More »

John Mount

My name is John Mount and I live in Meadow Lakes. On the day of the start of the fire my wife Dona said to me, “There’s a fire in Big Creek,” and I said, “Oh, okay. How big?” And she says, “Oh, it’s about a half an acre.” And I said, “Just absolutely no problem, don’t worry about it, they’ll get that real quick.”
Read More »

Karen Dondero

It’s been a year now, I still get emotional when we talk about it. I was born and raised in Big Creek, my dad worked for Edison, my Mom for US Forest Service.
Read More »

Marissa Neely

Marissa and Chris Neely are Shaver Lake locals who now live on their sailboat, named Avocet. This story was originally publised on their blog, Sailing Avocet: https://www.svavocet.com
Read More »

Christina Pasillas

I was living in Alder Springs with my two small children which is located in Auberry, California at the time of the Creek Fire. I had been in the home since 2019. When I first saw this small little home with a beautiful view I knew it was the one and I had to buy it.
Read More »

Steve Michael McQuillan

I was in South Lake Tahoe on the evening of September 4 on a four day family vacation that my daughter had arranged for all of us a year earlier. At approximately 7pm I received a page notifying me of a wildland fire near Camp Sierra and that our department had been dispatched.
Read More »

Cheri Deaton

I live four miles out on Petersen road, as the crow flies, right below Cressman’s on the same mountain. We have lived there for 30 years. We had a ranch built up with a two story house, a two story barn.
Read More »

Phyliss Randt

Friday before the evacuation I noticed some smoke, didn’t think much of it. Saturday was a little worse, didn’t think much of it. Sunday a Sheriff came by and said, “Hey, we’re gonna be chasing you out real soon.”
Read More »

Meg Tallberg

This is a story about a “little” spot in the forest during and immediately after the Creek Fire. We live just off of 168 below Ockenden & we have a “game” camera strapped to a tree on the corner of our property.
Read More »