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Helping their Meadowmere Park neighbors

Nearly $30,000 raised for fire victims


After a Meadowmere Park fire destroyed three houses, neighbors went to work to lend a helping hand to the fire victims with roughly $29,000 being donated to the affected families. 

Two GoFundMe money raising efforts were established for those impacted by the fire. Tinamarie Lombardo organized the one for her relatives Charlie, Debbie and Vinny Lombardo. Marie Rodriguez created the other GoFundMe for her friend Azza Ellaboudy.

The fire on Nov. 1 is believed to be a gas explosion that originated at 3 South Street between West and East avenues, officials said, that impacted two other homes at 1 and 5 South Street. All three houses were destroyed, officials said. Neighbors say the explosion sounded like a bomb. The fire call came in at 5:39 a.m.

Lombardo said that she and her fiancé, Elias, decided to start the fund for her relatives due to the irreparable damage their home suffered. “Thankfully, they’re all safe and unharmed physically but the fire and explosion damaged their home beyond repair and all their personal belongings are gone,” Lombardo said. “Our family appreciates the thoughts, prayers, and donations as they begin to recover and rebuild a new place to call home.”

A donation goal of $25,000 was set by Lombardo on GoFundMe. As of press time, $26,543 has been donated. “As the donations and support continuously flow in on a daily basis, we’d like to reiterate how truly thankful and touched we are by everyone coming together for our family,” Lombardo added. “Their home is being boarded and they’re patiently awaiting the next steps of the process.” Lombardo noted that her relatives are now temporarily relocated into a vacant home that was offered by a neighbor.

So far, $2,150 has been donated for Ellaboudy in the fund set up by Rodriguez. The goal has been set at $5,000. “Not only was her home destroyed, but also the memories and the sentiments that came with it,” Rodriguez said. “In this time of need, we can truly use all of the support to help out Azza and her family in such tragic times.”

In addition to the GoFundMe efforts, Meadowmere Park residents have joined together to help their neighbors. The Ladies Auxiliary began a donation drop off at 1 Meyer Ave. that will be shared with the families affected by the fire. Donors can also use Venmo to Jennifer Berghuis-Carrero or PayPal blueyedjb@yahoo.com. Put House Fire Families in the notes.

Donations to the GoFundMe’s can be made at: https://bit.ly/32JSOiQ and https://bit.ly/32HALda.