NATION

California Fires: Singh’s Dream Home Now In Ashes

A former Fijian is among those whose homes have been destroyed by the massive wildfires in California, United States of America.
25 Aug 2020 10:23
California Fires: Singh’s Dream Home Now In Ashes
Gulchat Singh house in flames. Inset: Gulchat Singh with his wife.

A former Fijian is among those whose homes have been destroyed by the massive wildfires in California, United States of America.

Gulchat Singh Pooni, 73, lost his five acre home in Vacaville, Northern California last week Wednesday (August 19). Mr Singh has been in the USA for 51 years and over time had built his own home.

It was a tragic moment when the spreading wildfires razed through his home. He could only watch.

“There were just three of us at home when it happened. There was nothing we could do, but save ourselves,” Mr Singh said.

Gulchat Singh with his wife.

Gulchat Singh with his wife.

“We are lucky to have kind family and relatives. We will see what the future holds, but I am definitely rebuilding my home once we get the all clear to go,” he said.

Mr Singh works as a landscaper and he had put more than just sweat into making his dream home. Now only ashes remain; a cruel reminder of the wildfires which are still burning.

A former Ba soccer player, Mr Singh migrated to the USA in 1969.

Former Suva football coach Gurjit Singh and very close friend described it as a big loss.

“He is a very hard working man. He built his dream home. I have known him since childhood. A very humble person. He is always there to help people,” he said.

According to abc.com, since August 15 more than 500 fires of varying sizes have burned throughout California, scorching 1.2 million acres, or 4856 square kilometers. Of those, about two dozen major fires were attracting much of the state’s resources.

Gulchat Singh house in flames.

Gulchat Singh house in flames.

Most of the damage was caused by the three major fires. They have burned 3.043 square kilometers, destroyed almost 1000 homes and other structures and killed five people, three of whom were found in a home in an area under an evacuation order.

The aerial view of Gulchat’s House.

The aerial view of Gulchat’s House.

Other casualties included ancient redwood trees at California’s oldest state park, Big Basin Redwoods, plus the park’s headquarters and campgrounds. Smoke from the fires made the region’s air quality dangerous, forcing millions to stay inside.

Edited by Karalaini Waqanidrola

Feedback: shalveen.chand@fijisun.com.fj


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