Pregnant Mom Said She Fled Wildfire in Calif. After Having Had to Do the Same During Previous Pregnancy

For a woman who fled her home due to a recent California wildfire, it was déjà vu all over again

Published Time: 09.07.2024 - 02:31:14 Modified Time: 09.07.2024 - 02:31:14

For a woman who fled her home due to a recent California wildfire, it was déjà vu all over again.

Arielle Pennick, 24, who is pregnant, told CNN that she evacuated her home in Oroville, California, with her 5-year-old son, her fiancé and her fiancé’s two children on Tuesday, July 2, the day the Thompson Fire started, the Sacramento Bee reported.

Never miss a story — sign up for PEOPLE's free daily newsletter to stay up-to-date on the best of what PEOPLE has to offer, from celebrity news to compelling human interest stories.

Penick said she was also pregnant in 2018 when she had to leave her Paradise, California, home during the Camp Fire, which has since become the deadliest wildfire in the state’s history.

“I was almost seven and a half months pregnant with my son Andrew. And he’s 5 now,” Penick told CNN in a story published last week. “And there was five of us, two dogs and a cat … and not one of us had a car. And so we were walking, and we walked for almost a mile. And some guy in a big white truck named Butch, he picked us up and he put us in the bed of his truck. Seeing my big old pregnant belly, he said, ‘Get in.’ ”

Penick found out that her Paradise home was mostly gone several weeks later at the time of the 2018 fire, which killed 85 people and destroyed almost 20,000 structures.

“All my baby stuff, my original ultrasounds from my pregnancy were burned,” she told CNN. "All the stuff I had for my son. I was supposed to h -

ave my baby shower on Nov. 11, and the Camp Fire happened on the 8th so I didn’t even get to have my baby shower.”

The Thompson Fire brought back memories for Penick, who said seeing the smoke in the sky immediately kicked in the “PTSD from the Camp Fire.”

“I’m supposed to be having my first appointment in Oroville on Friday, but now my doctor’s office is closed due to the fire,” she told CNN.

At the moment, Penick is staying at the home of a friend who also survived the 2018 Camp Fire, according to CNN.

As of early afternoon Monday, July 8, per Cal Fire, the Thompson Fire, which covered 3,789 acres, has been 98% contained. There were no reported deaths and two injuries while 26 structures were destroyed.

About 20,000 residents were ordered to leave because of the latest wildfire in Butte County, where Oroville sits, the San Francisco Chronicle reported.

California Gov. Gavin Newsom issued a state of emergency on Wednesday, July 3, in response to the Thompson Fire

“We are using every available tool to tackle this fire and will continue to work closely with our local and federal partners to support impacted communities,” Newsom said in a statement. “As we head into some of the most challenging months of wildfire season, the state is better prepared than ever to protect at-risk communities with new tools, technology and resources.”

Related Articles

Follow Us