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Paradise Resident Returns Home, Shows What Remains

Jerry Foster returned to his Harrison Rd. in Paradise on Wednesday. He showed Action News Now reporter Laura Eng what remains on the property since the Camp Fire burned through on Thursday, Nov. 8, 2018.

Posted: Dec. 5, 2018 5:27 PM
Updated: Dec. 5, 2018 6:57 PM

PARADISE, Calif. - Hundreds of people headed back home to Paradise Wednesday as evacuation orders were finally lifted in certain areas, just weeks after the Camp Fire started. 

Paradise resident Jerry Foster said all of it is overwhelming to him. He told Action News Now reporter Laura Eng that he is trying to wrap his head around seeing what is left of his Paradise home, where he has lived for the past 25 years.

"I know why my wife didn't want to come," Foster said. "It's overwhelming."

Foster showed Eng what was left of his home on Harrison Rd. "This was the front entry," he said. He pointed out the railing, and remnants of his china collection.  "You can see the china -- that's the saddest part. That's three generation of china," he sad sadly.

What was the value?  "Oh, I don't know," he said.

"Thousands of dollars. It was good bone china," he added.

The Fosters had a coin collection, but not much is left now except for a few melted pieces.

"We had it in a little cedar box... probably 200 to 300 dollars worth," he explained.

Burnt pieces of Foster's laundry and kitchen stood out. Crumpled parts of the bathroom still remained.  He pointed out his garden tractors and cars.

"The fire was so hot everything just melted," Foster said.

Despite losing many expensive collections, Foster managed to recover a few items he now deems priceless. For example, one of his garden elves survived.

Foster said his wife kept a beautiful landscape with the garden gnomes. He hopes they will remind her of what used to be.

Foster said he does not plan to rebuild. He is staying at a hotel in Chico with his wife, and says soon he will look to move elsewhere.

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