We are the Beaver Family (Aaron, Norene, Meaghan 19, Madyson 12 and Bryson 7) who in November of 2000 lost our home to a house fire. It started when an ember from the fireplace jumped and ignited some newspapers near it. Our 5 month old daughter was asleep 10 feet from where it started. I grabbed her and out of the house we ran with the clothing on our backs. It took everything - including our beautiful family cat, Oreo.
On December 3, 2007 a 100 year storm hit the Pacific Northwest. We have a small creek that runs into a natural pond behind our home that then runs through a culvert and eventually empties into a nearby lake. The culvert was blocked by debris (we called during the summer and asked public works to come clean it out which they did not) which allowed the pond to start to overflow. Within 10 minutes the water surrounded our home. My husband immediately grabbed a shovel and started hand digging at a berm we have in front of our property. It was a loosing battle though my husband never quit (that's who he is - he doesn't quit) - the water eventually made it's way into our crawlspace saturating our floor joists, insulation and various venting underneath the house. However, Aaron never quit - despite standing in three feet of swift running, freezing water for several hours he trudged on and eventually was able to break the berm free and the water started receding (MY HERO) - however the damage was done. FEMA came out immediately - the inspector was wonderful - however, all they gave us to make repairs was $1,600. Our lot was not considered a flood area - therefore we did not have flood insurance. We made the repairs on our own and they were completed around February of 2008.
On May 22nd of 2008, while driving to Walmart in Poulsbo my phone rang. Our neighbor said the fire department was at our house and that our house was on fire. I honestly thought she was joking. How can this happen TWICE? When I reached our house I saw the familiar scene - lots of fire trucks blocking the roadway and smoke billowing from our home. It was true - we had just suffered ANOTHER major house fire. Immediately I asked about my cats Millie and Mister - the firefighters unfortunately found them both - they had not made it. The fire had again taken everything - everything we had spent the last seven years replacing. Everything my children loved - their toys - their music - their pictures - their stuffed animals that made them feel secure at night - everything. I know - amazing to believe that it can happen once in a lifetime, let alone TWICE.
In September 2008, Aaron started experiencing abdominal pain. To make a long story short, it turned out he had gallstones. He had surgery September 26th but continued to have pain. His surgeon explained it away as post-op pain. The pain continued for four weeks until it was too much. After a trip to the ER and a referral to a gastroenterologist it was discovered that the surgery was not completely done and gallstones were still in his bile duct. He had to have emergency surgery - developed pancreatitis and was admitted to the hospital. The surgeon admits he made wrong choices all the way around but that doesn't help us with the $30,000 worth of medical bills we have now.
We have been asked several times now how come we continue to come back to the same property? Why after so much heartache that has been suffered on this property, why we continue to return. Why don’t we move and start over somewhere else? The answer is simply - it’s home. We love our neighborhood, we love our neighbors. Nothing is more comfortable than home, and this is it. It’s the only place our children have known as home.
Our story continues beyond this, it does not define us, but instead explains where we have come from and why it is so important for me to use the knowledge I have gained and pray that it never happens to another family, but if and when it does, to be there for them, to aid in their recovery, to help them rebuild their lives in as efficient a manner as possible.
Blessings to you and your family.
Aaron & Norene Beaver
Offers of help
We wanted to acknowledge those people or companies that have contacted us with offers of services, supplies or help in general - we cannot thank them enough.
Terhune Custom Homes
AlterECO Countertops - Shelby Powell
Around The Sound Construction
Olive Garden Silverdale
Members of Chapel Hill Presbyterian Church
Parents at Crosspoint Academy
Parents at Just for Kicks
Parents at Olympic Premier Volleyball Club
Paul Davis Restorations
Ferguson Enterprises Inc.
McNeill Tile & Stone
The Howell Family