ONO, Calif. - An Ono woman suffering from a potentially fatal disease is distraught and and in desperate need after losing her home in the Bully Fire.
Mickie Bateman said she was forced to flee her Platina Road home of 30 years, taking only her dog with her as the flames bared down on her Friday night.
"And I told the fireman I was evacuating and where I was evacuating from, apparently though they didn't know there was house there," Bateman said.
Yesterday, when evacuations and road closures were lifted, Bateman tried to return home only to learn that it had been leveled.
When she was showed a photograph of what's left Monday morning, she could only respond, "Dear me. Dear me."
While losing a home is devastating enough, a disease Bateman has been battling is doubling her trauma.
"I had breast cancer surgery in march," she said.
Fatigued and suffering complications from medications, Bateman said she's unable to sit or stand for long and was lucky to have escaped the fire alive.
The Red Cross has given her $180 to put her up in a hotel room and buy some clothes, but a recipient of Social Security, she said she'll only be able to make it a couple of days before she runs out of funds.
"Then I have no where else, and I need some help from the public to maybe find a place to live."
Now battling cancer and a recovery from cancer and complications, Bateman is finding strength hard to find.
"I think I've reached my point of staying strong right now, it's hard for me not to cry. And I think it's just the accumulation of all the things that have happened."
To help Bateman get back on her feet, her daughter has set up an online fundraiser.