Walmart Is Helping Families Displaced by Apartment Fire

There is a collection container inside the store and Walmart will work with Red Cross to provide assistance.

WalMart has pledged to help families displaced by Monday's fire at Beverly Apartments, including a family who jumped for their lives with two small children, from flames engulfing their door.

Thirteen residents at Beverly Apartments are displaced following a blaze that erupted at approximately 1:25 a.m. Monday. Witnesses saw smoke coming from the carport and before long flames had reached the second story of the building on Beverly Drive, according to authorities.

Flames damaged seven apartment units, with four of the apartments being a total loss. The fire also destroyed five vehicles and damaged two others. The American Red Cross responded to the scene and set up a temporary shelter at Callinan Sports Center for the displaced residents. They were later housed at local motels.

The cause of the fire is under investigation.

Mara Best and Amber McAlvain lived on the second story at Beverly Apartments. When flames trapped their escape route, Best had to throw McAlvain's two young children down to a neighbor and then jump herself. They were all taken to a local hospital. The children had minor smoke inhalation and McAlvain broke her ankle leaping out the window. (Earlier stories had said Best broke her ankle, however Best's sister corrected this for Patch.)

Neighbor Trevor Kasimoss is credited with saving this family's lives. He also helped other apartment residents by grabbing a ladder and passing it up to them, according to Rohnert Park Public Safety Lt. John Marty.

On Tuesday, Best's sister contacted Patch and asked if we could publish this letter asking for donations of food and other goods for the family. The letter specifically asked Walmart to provide donations.

Walmart contacted Patch within a couple of hours after we published the letter.

A collection container for canned goods and clothing to help all the displaced families has been placed inside the Rohnert Park store.

“Together with our customers, we want to support the families displaced by this fire by providing a safe drop off location for much-needed canned food and clothing items. It’s during these difficult times that we are reminded what a great community this is and we are proud to be part of it,” said Katherine Robey, Store Manager. 

The store is at 4625 Redwood Drive, Rohnert Park.

For more information contact Best's sister, Kylie, at mizkylie@gmail.com


Sheena January 24, 2013 at 10:28 PM
Good job Walmart, hopefully more places/people in our community can help these families. I can not imagine how scary it was for them and how awful it is to have lost everything! I wish there was more I could do for them. They are all in my prayers. XOXO
Bree January 25, 2013 at 04:46 PM
The owner/operator of Rohnert Park Grocery Outlet, Cheri Weir heard about the plight of these people and decided to act. Cheri spent, from her own pocket, hundreds of dollars on just this family alone. Also, some of her employess rallied to give what they could as well. Cheri is a wonderful and generous lady with a huge heart who cares about her community.She regularly gives to our local community and rarely receives any thanks. My thoughts and prayers go out to these families.
Amberlee February 19, 2013 at 06:35 AM
Yes she did, thank you.Cheri!


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