A guest house on an acreage northeast of Sylvan Lake was completely destroyed by fire Sunday morning along with all the resident’s possessions.
Sylvan Lake firefighters received the call about 10:45 a.m. and arrived to find the structure engulfed in flames. It was at the back of an acreage on Township Road 391 just west of Range Road 10.
Muriel Sears, a cook at Lakewood Golf Course, was living in the home at the time, said property owner Cheryl Stanley.
While the main buildings on the property were insured, the mobile home wasn’t and Sears didn’t have contents insurance, she added.
“She lost everything,” Stanley said. Help has been pouring in though. The Red Cross and Sylvan Lake Victim Services were on the scene and assisted Sears that night.
“There’s been awesome support from our neighbours bringing over food and from my children,” said Stanley. Her children in Okotoks and Cochrane are bringing up items like clothing and dishes. Cash has started coming in to help Sears get on her feet again.
Her employer, Darcy Carruthers, has also been fantastic in helping.
For a volunteer department, Stanley credited Sylvan Lake firefighters with doing “an excellent job”.
She explained they’d had a fire in a fire pit the night before. A little breeze apparently blew some embers which got under the skirting and started smouldering then went up the side of the home to the roof, the fire investigator told her.
Stanley added they’re now trying to assess how to move forward. “We’re trying to get a game plan.”
They’re considering a small structure rather than another mobile home for Sears who also looks after their residence when they’re away.
Cleanup of the site was underway when Stanley talked to Sylvan Lake News Tuesday morning.
For those who would like to assist, they may contact Cheryl Stanley at 403-877-6402 or Muriel Sears at 403-505-8618. Sears now has a storage bay and could accept some items of furniture.
Sylvan Lake’s Servus Credit Union is also accepting donations.
Deputy Fire Chief Steve Scanland reported 23 firefighters battled the blaze for about four hours. Red Deer County assisted with a tanker truck for hauling water to the scene. There were no injuries.