Special to The Standard
UXBRIDGE: Uxbridge and surrounding communities have been coming together to help support a local farming family who suffered a catastrophic house fire on March 15th.
A little after 12:30 a.m., one of the home owners, Dan Moore, said he could smell sawdust burning. After further inspection, with his wife Sarah Moore, they realized their fireplace mantle had caught on fire, and after removing it, saw flames coming from both sides.
“As soon as I pulled off the Mantle, Dan said, 'Call 911 and I'll go get our daughter,' ” Mrs. Moore said.
Firefighters from Uxbridge and Mount Albert fire departments arrived at the scene, approximately ten minutes after the family called 911.
“The firefighters did an excellent job and contained the fire in its area of origin,” Uxbridge’s Fire Chief Phil Alexander said.
The Moore family appreciated how helpful the firefighters were at the scene.
“They kept asking us how we were, if we had any animals left in the house, and if there was anything important in the house they could go get,” Mrs. Moore said.
Her husband lost his arms in a farming accident three years ago and his mechanical arms were still inside, as their home was engulfed in flames.
Fortunately, the firefighters were able to recover the arms undamaged, along with wedding photos and baby pictures.
Mrs. Moore admits her family has had some rough times over the past few years, with Dan losing his arms and now losing their home to a fire, but they are staying strong.
“This isn’t going to slow us down. We’re going to still continue supporting our daughter and barrel racing all summer. We are still going to continue farming, because that’s Dan’s passion and that’s what we do,” Mrs. Moore said.
The community has been extremely supportive, she says.
“Everyone has been really amazing. They helped us out with Dan’s prior accident, and the community here in this end has been incredible.”
Holly Geissberger, a close family friend, started a GoFundMe campaign to help raise money to support the Moore family. On the day the campaign was posted, 25 different people from the community donated a total of $2,300. Since then, the page has raised an additional $2,270, bringing the total to $4,570, just shy of their $5000 goal.
The Moore’s have been staying with close family friends in Aurora, and say they have made them feel very at home.
The Moore’s farm had several animals living there and after the fire they couldn’t keep them because they had no power or water. Mrs. Moore says, the community has been incredible, helping to look after them. Family friends have been looking after their horses, dogs, and chickens. Even Uxbridge’s pet daycare, “Bone Voyage”, took in the family’s cats, for which they are extremely grateful, according to Mrs. Moore.
“We wouldn’t really have any clothes on our backs right now or anywhere to stay. Our animals would have had nowhere to go. Without our friends and the community that we live in, I don’t know what would have happened,” Moore said.
Diane Smullen, owner and operator of Bilby ranch, is hosting a fundraiser, Saturday, April 8th. There will be barrel racing, pole bending, and a silent auction to help raise funds for the Moore family. Over 80 items have already been donated by various people throughout the community.
The Boston Pizza in Uxbridge is also having a fundraiser to help the Moore’s, on April 24th, between 4 and 9 p.m. Boston Pizza is donating 10% of everyone’s bill directly to the Moore family.