MEDFORD, Ore. -- Monday marked day twelve of the Camp Fire wreaking havoc in Butte County, California. The Medford Neighborhood Church wants to show the survivors the Rogue Valley cares.
No one ever wants to see the place they know and love burn from existence. Unfortunately Pastor Lee Gregory of the Medford Neighborhood Church has seen the Camp Fire destroy what he used to know over the last twelve days. He was raised in Paradise, California, even graduated from Paradise High School. He and his wife have lived here for 26 years now. His family back in paradise escaped with just a few suitcases and their dog in their now singed car.
"Others from our friends and family made it here to Medford with just the clothes that they were wearing. Even some of those were singed," said Pastor Lee Gregory.
When he isn't in the church, he's Bus Driver Lee, making sure kids in Jackson County get to and from school safely. Many of the kids asked him about the Camp Fire and his hometown.
"One student on the back of the bus said I don't care. The bus got quiet. Then one student stood up and said 'well I care' and another stood up and another student stood up and another student shouted ‘I care!’" Gregory said.
That first student apologized. That's how the donation drive started. It's called 'I care Paradise, California.' So far the church has only collected a few bags of clothing but wants to do more. Looking for items that can help the thousands of people now displaced and lift their spirits.
"And I think we can care more. And sometimes it takes a spark. There's an old song ‘it takes a spark to get a fire going.’ That's what's behind this."
You can take donations to the Medford Neighborhood Church
1819 W. Stewart Ave.
Medford, OR 97501
Other ways you can help: