Woman loses her beloved pet dog in Apple Fire
CORNING, Calif. —
The Apple Fire that ripped through Tehama County on Saturday destroyed homes and property, burning west of Corning. Three homes were destroyed and one of them was Hope Shaffer's mobile home.
Inside, Shaffer's home was her dog Max, her beloved pet.
"June 9th will never be forgotten. He was like my son and my best friend all in one. Words can't describe how I feel really," Shaffer said. "It was about an hour and a half before the fire reached my house. When I actually saw the smoke clouds, I called my grandpa to see if everything was okay because of where it was positioned. And I can still hear it playing over in my head: 'Your house is gone!' and all I can think about was my dog being trapped in the house and I couldn't feel anything."
Shaffer said she tried to save him.
"I ran to the house and the smoke was so black...so black I was choking and gagging on it," Shaffer said.
She said when she got Max, she was fighting through troubled times.
"Why it hurts so bad was because my dog was more than just my dog," Shaffer explained. "I used to have a drug problem and I was a few days clean when I got him. He was 6 weeks old and he was the fattest of the bunch."
Shaffer created a grave for Max and buried him with a cross and a stone at the in their yard.
"You'll never be forgotten and your work on this planet is not going to be for nothing," Shaffer said.
Shaffer said she hopes people will cherish what they have and urges people to be prepared in case a wildfire hits their community.