Samara Palmer and her family’s home and day spa, called Maradise, were destroyed by fire on Aug. 31. (GoFundMe Photo)

Shuswap community rallies around family who lost home to suspicious fire

RCMP are investigating the fire which displaced a Cambie-Solsqua family

A house fire near Sicamous has drawn an outpouring of support for the family who lost their home and has prompted an investigation by the RCMP.

The Sicamous Fire Department was called to the residence in the Cambie-Solsqua area in the early-morning hours of Saturday, Aug. 31. Fire Chief Brett Ogino said the Malakwa and Swansea Point fire departments were called in to help but the house was a total loss.

The loss of the house is especially devastating for Samara Palmer and her family because it served both as their home and the location of Palmer’s home-based business, the Maradise day spa, hair salon and fitness studio.

Family friend Kim Johnson is housing Palmer and her children for the time being and has also set up a GoFundMe page to help get the family back on their feet. Johnson said along with the loss of the home and personal items, the equipment Palmer uses for her business was also destroyed so money raised will go towards helping her get her business reestablished.

The GoFundMe Page had raised $2,865 of its $10,000 goal after being up for only 20 hours on the afternoon of Sept. 5. The page is available at www.gofundme.com/f/maradise.

Along with the GoFundMe page, a fundraising event has been scheduled for the Cambie Hall on Sept. 28. The fundraiser, which starts at 4 p.m., will feature giant outdoor inflatables for the kids, a silent auction and a concession dinner served by the Eagle Valley 4H Club.

Read More: Kelowna father pleads guilty to triple murder of daughters, wife

Read More: A security risk to Canada and a liar’: MP reacts to ISIS supporter living in Enderby

Organizer Joanne Stacey, who will also be performing music at the fundraiser, said both her performance and the open mic to follow will be streamed on Facebook Live.

As the community rallies around the displaced family, investigators are working to unravel the suspicious circumstances surrounding the fire.

Sgt. Murray McNeil of the Sicamous RCMP said the fire is being investigated as suspicious in nature. McNeil said no one was in the house when his officers arrived on scene after being called by the Sicamous Fire Department. RCMP officers provided security at the scene and awaited fire investigators after the blaze was out.

McNeil said he is awaiting reports from both the Kelowna-based RCMP fire investigator and an investigator from the homeowner’s insurance company.

“We’re still actively investigating why the house caught fire and if anybody is responsible for that in a criminal nature,” McNeil said.

Read More: Garbage attracts bears, put it away or face fines: B.C. conservation officers

Read More: Salmon Arm company puts free roof over community-minded single mom

He added that at 7 that morning a person was apprehended under the Mental Health Act near the home destroyed in the fire. The person who police apprehended is in a hospital and has not been charged with any offence. McNeil said the link between the incident which led to the Mental Health Act arrest and the fire is being investigated.


@SalmonArm
jim.elliot@saobserver.net

Like us on Facebook and follow us on Twitter

Just Posted

FortisBC to maintain gas rates for the remainder of 2019

The next review for natural gas and propane costs will be in Dec. 2019

Revelstoke company airing on Dragons’ Den this fall

Did the Dragons invest? Find out on Oct. 17

Photos: For the love of garlic

Highlights from 2019 Revelstoke’s Garlic Festival

Books for Kids campaign aiming for $30,000

Money raised during the campaign will help Revelstoke improve literacy and love for reading

Man cycles across B.C. Interior for sobriety

Vancouver Island Resident Mat Fee is approaching the final phase of his cross-Canada bike journey to raise awareness about addiction recovery.

‘It’s almost surreal’: South Okanagan fire chief, sidekick Sammy recap rescue mission in Bahamas

Chief Larry Watkinson and Sam the disaster dog spent 8 days assisting a search and rescue team

Defense says burden of proof not met in double murder case against Victoria father

Closing statements begin in trial for man accused of killing daughters Christmas 2017

B.C. dog breeder banned again after 46 dogs seized

The SPCA seized the animals from Terry Baker, 66, in February 2018

Surrey mom allegedly paid $400,000 for son in U.S. college bribery scam

Xiaoning Sui, 48, was arrested in Spain on Monday night

B.C. population on pace to fall behind Alberta

Provincial population could reach almost seven million in 2043, but Alberta is growing faster

Three dogs found shot dead in Prince George ditch

The three adult dogs appeared to be well cared for before being found with gunshot wounds, BC SPCA says

Vancouver police could be using drones to fight crime by end of year

The police department has already purchased three drones, as well as three others for training

B.C. party bus company to be monitored after 40 intoxicated teens found onboard

Police received tip teens and young adults were drinking on party buses and limousines in Surrey

Okanagan ski racer chosen for grant in end game

Makena Kersey, 18, has called it a career following a gruesome leg injury, but story inspires grant

Most Read