A GoFundMe account has been started to help a family that lost their home on Dec. 21 in fire at Riva Ridge mobile home park. Skylar Noe-Vack photo

Updated: Mother and son lost everything in Riva Ridge mobile home fire

GoFundMe started for Penticton family who lost home Friday

After a fire destroyed a home in the Riva Ridge mobile home park near Penticton on Dec. 21, a daughter is trying to help her mother out with a GoFundMe drive.

Related: Mobile home burns in Riva Ridge

Jenny Rowlands says they were lucky her mother, Charlotte, wasn’t home at the time, recovering from a previous surgery in hospital. Her brother Johnny, however, was home and had to be airlifted to the burn unit at Vancouver General Hospital with third-degree burns on his arms and stomach.

One of their two cats died in the fire, and the other is still missing.

“I’m taking it literally hour by hour,” said Rowlands in a phone interview with the Western News Sunday, adding that she is getting over the shock. “Reality is finally setting in.”

Rowlands expects her brother will be hospitalized for a few weeks, and her mother is in the hospital for a few more days.

“They sent him up to the Intensive Care Unit because he was having breathing problems. He’s kind of sedated right now.”

Rowlands was told her brother’s burns should heal on their own, and they don’t think he is going to need skin grafts. She’s been told her mother is also under medication in the hospital as she recovers from surgery.

“It’s tough, obviously, being away knowing that she’s not really fully knowing what’s going on because she’s in the hospital herself,” said Rowlands. “My concern right now is being here for my brother. And then I’ll have to go down to see my mom.

“But my dad is flying in right now. So he will be heading there tomorrow (Monday).”

Rowlands said her mother has no house insurance, and along with her brother, lost everything in the fire.

“I am looking for support to help her relocate and start her life over again once she is released from the hospital on or near Christmas Day,” wrote Rowlands. “My mother was always a giver and thoughtful when anyone was ever in need. Please open your heart and help my mother in a time of need. I’m so thankful my family is alive. Everything else is replaceable.”

Rowlands has received a few messages from people in the community asking how to donate physical items and gift cards. Any help is welcome, she said.

“I don’t actually even really know where to start. My aunt has told me that social services and the Red Cross are supposed to be stepping in, but we don’t really know to what extent,” said Rowlands.

Those wishing to donate can do so through their GoFundMe page at gofundme.com/charlotte-and-johnny-rowlands-house-fire-recovery.


Steve Kidd
Senior reporter, Penticton Western News
Email me or message me on Facebook
Follow us on Facebook | Twitter | Instagram

Just Posted

Foundry Kelowna to take its services on the road this fall

Foundry Mobile will break down barriers for Kelowna youth thanks to a generous donation

Suspect drops white powder running from police near Kelowna playground

Kelowna RCMP responded to reports of two individuals swinging a chain in a park

Public upset over man allegedly exposing himself at Kelowna’s Rotary Beach

No arrests made, charges not considered at this time, RCMP say

Warmer fall weather could extend wildfire season: AccuWeather

Above seasonal temperatures are expected throughout September, October and November

Who let the dogs out: Only 17 days until Kelowna’s 2nd annual mud race for pups

This year will be bigger and better than last year, organizers say

Paws! Join the cause and raise money for the BC SPCA

Sign up to walk in the annual BC SPCA Paws for a Cause walk

RCMP catch ‘erratic’ driving thieves; upon release steal mountain bike

The incident involved a police chase, taser, and a destroyed vehicle

New study suggests autism overdiagnosed: Canadian expert

Laurent Mottron: ‘Autistic people we test now are less and less different than typical people’

B.C. father tells judge he did not kill his young daughters

Andrew Berry pleaded not guilty to the December 2017 deaths

Trans Mountain gives contractors 30 days to get workers, supplies ready for pipeline

Crown corporation believes the expansion project could be in service by mid-2022

Heavy police responses in Kamloops connected to unfounded weapons calls

Mounties were seen in Westsyde and in North Kamloops on Tuesday night and Wednesday morning

Rosemount cooked diced chicken linked to listeria case in B.C.

The symptoms of listeria include vomiting, nausea, fever, muscle aches

B.C. seniors allowed more choice to stay in assisted living

Province doesn’t need to wait for a complaint to investigate care, Adrian Dix says

Retired B.C. fisherman wins record $60M Lotto Max jackpot

Joseph Katalinic won the biggest Lotto Max prize ever awarded

Most Read