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Lawrence Fire Department collecting donations for fire victims

Posted: 5:52 PM, Dec 21, 2018
Updated: 2018-12-21 18:29:37-05

LAWRENCE — Piece by piece the Benjamin Court Fire victims in Lawrence must rebuild their lives.

Rising out of the ashes, there are volunteer groups and government agencies helping to make that happen.

"Everything was burned in the fire right," said 87-year-old, Norma Smith. "You needed your ID yo move forward with your life? Definitely."

Fire swept through the Benjamin Court Apartments Building #2 on Monday. But she and 62 others have essential daily life concerns that need to be met.

Representatives from the Bureau of Motor Vehicles came to the complex to get the basics. Such as, replacing licenses and ID cards, right on site.

Smith got her's and is staying with family for now.

On the other end, 62-year-old Donna Burse doesn't have family to stay with. She is now getting hygiene products, and other essential items she lost in the fire, donated. The trauma from the blaze is adversely affecting her health, as well.

"I'm diabetic. I have high blood pressure. My numbers are usually in the 16's. I took it last night and it was 283. Stress does that."

Burse only has the clothes she currently has on. "Clothes is what I need," she said. "I have what I have on. I did go and buy some shoes. I bought a pair of pants."

The Red Cross is trying to relieve some stress, with money.

15 victims are staying at Wood Spring Suites.

"The trustee's office is providing vouchers so the displaced tenants can spend up to one month at a hotel," he said.

Two others are staying at a Suburban Extended Stay Hotel.

"We're not abandoning them after this is all over and people have gone their separate ways," said Dawn Hughes. "The trustee's office is here for the residents of Lawrence. We will continue to help them in the manner that we can."

The fire department is collecting donations for the fire victims. If you would like to contribute, you can send your check to the Lawrence Fire Department, 9001 East 59th Street Suite 204, Indianapolis, Indiana 46216.

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