The Federal Emergency Management Agency (FEMA) has authorized the use of federal funds to assist the State of California in combatting the Kincade fire burning in Sonoma County.
The Kincade Fire is not yet a memory. Clean-up continues. Repopulation and reentry are underway. Insurance claims will be filed. The fire isn’t out although it is largely contained. The typical stories focused on first responders, the evacuees, or the fire and the damage it caused have been written and printed. The opinion pieces on the causes, the heroes, the villains are on the way. The pictures of the politicians visiting the shelters, the volunteers, famous or not, feeding the hungry and the shelters have been circulated. This story is not those. This story is about the event through the eyes of a volunteer who was a small part of this whole story.
As a spark burst onto dry forest material to ignite another big fire coming out of the Mayacama Mountains in northern Sonoma County, reminders and images came to light of another Oct. night in 2017.
Three years ago, Paul Lovelace started out as just a volunteer tennis coach for the Rancho Cotate Women’s Tennis Team. At the time, the program was at the bottom. Lovelace had very few players to work with. Fast forward three years, the Cougars are undefeated and on the verge of winning the program’s first ever championship. So, what’s the secret? The secret is in recruiting.
Even as the Kincade Fire still burns, Rotarians are reaching out to help. The 47 Rotary clubs of Rotary District 5130—with clubs in Del Norte, Humboldt, Mendocino, Lake, Napa and Sonoma counties—are coming together to facilitate club, member and community donations to help the victims of fires that continue to devastate Sonoma County.