Dry conditions and strong winds quickly spread a house fire in the small town of Collinsville, Calif, on July 4. No one was hurt and in the end eight homes were destroyed, or half the town. Most of the homes were about 75 years old, built just after another fire devastated the whole town. For the residents, the process of rebuilding is just beginning.
Last Mother's Day, Shae McCord, then 7, had a headache that resulted in a trip to the hospital. After seeing a series of doctors she was diagnosed with a malignant brain tumor and immediately underwent surgery lasting 13 hours. McCord underwent chemotherapy and radiation at the same time in a test program. Now she is regaining strength and active with a Spanish immersion program at her school, swimming and Girl Scouts.
“In our instance, we’re lucky, we’re one of the few,” Shae's mother, Tara, said. “We got closer. You appreciate every day.”