GRANTS PASS, Ore. — In November, the Camp Fire broke out in Paradise and burned a total of 153,336 acres, destroyed 18,804 structures, killed 85 people and injured several firefighters.
As the anniversary approaches next month, one local family has rebuilt from the ashes and is now living and working in Grants Pass. Zachary Thomas and his family moved to Grants Pass after the Camp Fire claimed the lives of their family dog, home and personal belongings.
Things were not easy. For some time, the family moved around and settled in Lake Tahoe until they realized working in the food truck business would not go well with the cold weather. As a result, they moved to Southern Oregon to continue in the food truck industry.
"We have a few friends here and we really like to travel and Southern Oregon seems to be the epicenter of wherever you want to go you can go," Thomas said.
In August, Thomas and his family opened a food truck business by the name of "Pressed" in Grants Pass located on Sixth and L Street.
Since the fire, their biggest struggle has been trying to get back to normal.
"The biggest thing was just getting back to normalcy, we lost a family pet so we're trying to explain to a three-year-old about where his house went and where his dog went and trying to regain a sense of community and culture that we had in Paradise," Thomas said.
One year later, the Thomas family is continuing to get back to their normal schedule and has goals to open another food truck serving pizza right next door to their current stand.