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Spring Fire survivor burned out a second time

The trailer they were staying in is destroyed. Woman’s life is saved by her dog

by Mary-Ann Brandon

LA VETA — For the second time in the span of less than one month, Amber and Richard Godfrey have been devastated by fire.

After losing all but the few possessions that they could hurriedly cram into their Airstream trailer when evacuating the Spring Fire, Amber awoke to the insistent plea of her dog, nudging her to “get up” on Sunday night.

Trying to verbally calm her dog Luka, she finally sat up in bed to find a wall of brown and black smoke with an orange glow in the near distance. She quickly evacuated the trailer with her beloved canine in tow, but realized that she had left her phone behind. She ran back inside the inferno to retrieve the phone and when she got outside the entire back end of the trailer was consumed by flame. 911 responded, but everything inside the trailer, all remnants of the couple’s history, was lost to their second fire in less than 30 days. Even the keys to their car were gone. Faulty electrical wiring is the presumed cause of the blaze.

The surrounding community has jumped into action. North By Southwest in La Veta and Free the Monkey in Salida and Buena Vista have donated clothing to Amber. A slew of concerned friends and community members have donated to help the couple get the immediate help that they will need to get back on their feet. Vonnie and Gary Valdez have loaned the couple the use of their 5th wheel trailer to allow them to proceed until they can rebuild. A benefit event and concert are planned for August 4 and 5 to help the Godfreys rebuild. Area businesses that are donating to the benefit concert will be reported at a later date, see article on page 4 for more info.

Monetary donations to the couple can be dropped off at the La Veta Library.

Online donations can be made at (click on “Market”)09-00-p

Amber Godfrey with Luka at the site of the second fire. Photo courtesy of Richard Godfrey