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Bootleg Fire burns 21 homes and 54 other structures

Many evacuees are wondering if their homes are still standing.

KLAMATH COUNTY, Ore. — The Bootleg Fire has burned more than 212,000 acres in Klamath County. As of Wednesday evening, the fire is 5% contained.

Gert Zoutendijk with the Oregon State Fire Marshal’s office said 21 homes and 54 other structures have burned, and 2,000 homes or structures are threatened.

“We’re just waiting it out and waiting to hear what’s going on,” said Kim Bergey, who lives in an evacuation zone.

“Some people have already been told they have nothing left and then there’s others like me waiting to see if we still have a property,” she said.

Bergey said some people who have lost their homes are already struggling with their insurance companies because they haven’t been able to get pictures to prove their home burned down.

KGW first spoke with Bergey about a week ago when she got to the evacuation center at the Klamath County Fairgrounds.

“We appreciate the cots, but sometimes it’s not the best sleep you know, they’re a little rough on you,” said Bergey.

She’s there with her fiancé, five dogs and four cats. They’re confined to their corner of the evacuation center.

“We have our rough spots. It’s kind of hard being so close to people when you’re used to being a mile apart from your closest neighbor,” Bergey said.

For her pets that are used to roaming her 20-acres of property, it’s been tough.

“For them to be kind of cooped up in a small kennel most of the day is kind of depressing on them,” said Bergey.

Still, she said she's grateful for the help.

“It’s not just the red cross, it’s CERT (Community Emergency Response Team) too. Project Spirit has done an amazing job getting the animals and livestock out of the fire,” she said.

Bergey said they get three meals a day as well as snacks. She said she’s also grateful for the opportunity to get to know her neighbors better. They’re coming together to help each other out as much as they can.

Then, there’s the help they’re getting from the community.

“When I got my cats and dogs out, I wasn’t able to get clothing for me. It was food and necessities for the animals,” said Bergey.

She said people have brought dog and cat food, treats, blankets and clothing.

“Every little bit has been a huge blessing,” said Bergey.

“Thank you is not even enough to express the gratitude I have for that,” she said.

Editor's note: Click here for the latest on all the fires burning in Oregon and SW Washington


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