Escondido woman mourns loss of her hometown Paradise

Posted at 6:15 PM, Nov 09, 2018
and last updated 2018-11-09 21:55:20-05

SAN DIEGO (KGTV) — Hundreds of miles from her hometown of Paradise, Ashley Ketcham watches in horror as the Camp Fire ravages her beloved community.

She now lives in Escondido and first heard about the fire from her mother.

“I kind of blew it off because we’ve had fires my whole life, and then she wrote me back again and said the CMA Church burned down," Ketcham remembers.

RELATED: Camp Fire: At least 9 dead as fire incinerates N. California town

At first, she felt numb.

“I woke up this morning and, um, a friend of mine said 'Is it ok to hate God right now?' And I was just devastated, and I think that’s when it hit me, that their whole life is gone, their homes, their jobs, the memories, places we visited as kids, they're just gone," said Ketcham.

She says the people of Paradise will need many things, but right now they need prayers.

RELATED: Interactive map: Camp Fire burns across NorCal towns

“Just please pray, please pray for these families, if you have a way to help, please help," said Ketcham.

Thousands of structures have burned in the small community, including hospitals, schools, and homes.

At least five people have been killed.

The North Valley Community Foundation has activated a fire relief fund to donate to those displaced.