150 Mile resident Norma Sure and dog, Nylah, are some of the many evacuees in Prince George. (Ashley Wadhwani/Black Press)

Finding the silver lining in an evacuation

The recent evacuations from 150 Mile House, have connected Norma Sure to her daughter and nephew

The tears came quickly for Norma Sure when her daughter and nephew made it to Prince George Saturday night.

“When they arrived… I couldn’t stop crying,” she said.

For the longtime Cariboo resident, today is evacuation day nine.

With her nephew’s dog Nylah at her feet, Sure waited patiently in a chair off to the side of the emergency reception centre Sunday morning, watching hundreds rush from their cars to get in line and register with Emergency Social Services.

Her daughter and her boyfriend, as well as her nephew and his girlfriend were inside getting registered themselves. They’re a few of the nearly 37,000 people who have been displaced due to the wildfires raging across the province.

RELATED: Wildfires displace thousands of evacuees

It’s hard to find positives when natural disasters strike, but Sure has seemed to find a silver lining.

Saturday’s evacuation meant family was joining her in Prince George, she explained.

At least they’d be together.

Sure was evacuated more than a week ago from her 150 Mile home and only given a few short hours to pack.

Although she had to leave behind most of her belongings – including her rooster – Sure managed to bring three of her horses to Prince George. They’re now being cared for by volunteers at the Prince George Exhibition Grounds.

Sure moved her dozen-or-so chickens to her parents house nearby, but during their own evacuation to Kamloops they couldn’t manage to catch a single one, and had to leave them behind.

Sure’s niece – who was sent during an evauation order to Kamloops – had managed to get a permit Thursday to check on the ranch. The rooster was still where it was left, near plenty of water and food.

VIDEO: Young parents’ dream turns to nightmare in wildfire

Feeling homesick, Sure’s had more than a week to internalize the situation she’s been dealt.

“There are moments where I just wants to be in the comfortability of my home,” she said.

But she’s also happy to be safe, and surrounded by family she can now ensure are also OK.

“Everyone’s out alive, and that’s all that matters.”

Sure’s preparing for the long haul. She’s re-registering for funds through the Emergency Social Services and suspects it could be some time before she’s allowed back into the town she calls home.

As for returning home, it’s a waiting game highly dependent on weather, as fire crews try to contain each blaze.

The five family members are staying together at the Coast Inn of the North Hotel, where evacuees have been given discounts. The rest of the bill being paid for through their ESS stipend.

Each day, they’ll wait together for updates on their homes and when they can return to their communities.

“Crazy has become the new normal.”

Just Posted

‘Listen to your gut’ urges injured skier

Mike Shaw was told he’d never walk again after an accident four years ago, but he defied the odds

Nasty note on windshield sparks online outrage

Vernon’s Bailey McDonald is using a painful experience to start conversation about invisible illness

Remembering road crash victims in Kelowna

World Day of Remembrance for Road Crash Victims takes place Sunday in Kelowna

Small grass fire sparks in West Kelowna

Fire crews quickly douse blaze in ditch on Friday afternoon

Constructive meeting held with Carr’s Landing Community and Recreation Association

Lake Country - Residents met with the city yesterday to discuss the area by Gable Beach Road North

Flag person struck by car

RCMP investigating incident involving female traffic control person and senior driver

‘I will now live in consistent fear’: Allan Schoenborn granted escorted leaves

The Merritt man was deemed not criminally responsible in the killing of his three children in 2008

Guns and drugs seized in Kamloops RCMP blitz

Kamloops Mounties and the gang unit seize drugs and make arrests in two-day blitz

Hammy the deer dodges conservation officers in Prince Rupert

The famous Prince Rupert hammock deer maintains his purple threads

‘No shirt, no service, no Canada’

Shirtless Tacoma man arrested after Canadian border officials say they found meth in rental vehicle

Interior Health expands meningococcal precautions in South Okanagan

Oliver, Osoyoos and Okanagan Falls included in the expanded precautionary immunization measure

Homeless count returns amid Penticton’s housing crisis

Volunteers are hitting the streets this week to find solid data on Penticton’s homeless population

Missing woman smart, courageous, lovable

Mother says Caitlin Potts trying to overcome foster care experience

Federal funding to combat guns, gangs and opioid crisis

Public Safety Minister Ralph Goodale said illicit drugs are often main cause of guns, gangs violence

Most Read