Fourteen long and heartbreakingly uncertain months have gone by since a B.C. Interior family lost their home to the White Rock Lake wildfire in Monte Lake, B.C.
And now, the day has finally come to move back in.
“(We are) so excited. Just to be settled, it has been a lot of (uncertainty),” said Michelle Maisonneuve, a Monte Lake resident.
Large smiles almost tell the entire story for Michelle Maisonneuve and Robert Hugh, as the home looks and feels like a home again.
Global News first met the two in early August of 2021.
It had only been days since the destructive White Rock Lake wildfire had burned through the hills looking over Monte Lake, destroying everything in its path, including their home.
Their rebuild was difficult and not possible without the help they never saw coming.
A charity group called the Mennonite Disaster Service and an army of its volunteers have adopted this community as one of its relief projects, building homes and restoring hope.
“We feel compassion for people. I am retired, I could sit at home and watch TV but this gives me satisfaction to do something for other people,” said Henry Wiens, with the Mennonite Disaster Service.
“This is the fourth house we have finished.”
A lot was lost in the fire, irreplaceable items like a prized Wayne Gretzky rookie card.
But, some important items held strong, including their will to one day return back home.