Baker community raising funds for Brant couple who lost home in fire

Louetta R. Clark


BAKER — Steve and Beth Brant manufactured it out of their property on Outdated River Road with only their pajamas and a cellphone utilised to phone 911 following a large fire ignited in their garage on April 11.

“They experienced 40 furthermore yrs of memories, fellowship, adore and coming house from a hard day’s function that burnt in a subject of two several hours,” stated Shea Boykin, a longtime mate of the family members.

Various fire departments answered the contact when the blaze broke out early that early morning. The home was by now engulfed by the time firefighters arrived, in accordance to a report by the North Okaloosa Fire District.

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Flames engulfed Steve and Beth Brant's home on Old River Road in Baker on April 11. A fundraiser is being organized for June 18 at Gum Creek Lodge to help the couple recover.

NOFD crews battled the blaze with firefighters from Crestview and Holt. They eventually identified as in tanker trucks from the Baker Fire District and Munson and Harold Fire and Rescue thanks to the dimensions of the hearth and deficiency of a h2o source.

An investigation determined the fire was probable triggered by an electrical problem — quite possibly a shorter circuit — in an panel in the garage.

The Brants are perfectly-acknowledged to the Baker neighborhood from many years of assist for many businesses, and Boykin stated numerous had been speedy to help right after they listened to of the hearth. 1 pair introduced them new clothes and presented them a place to stay.

Others supplied food items and business for the couple who dropped not only their property and autos, but their dog Penny and lots of sentimental family members heirlooms. Now, a fundraiser is becoming arranged for June 18.

“I imagine I can discuss for all when I say the purpose we needed to do the fundraiser, ‘Building Back again the Brants,’ is since Beth and Steve are two extremely specific, liked people in this local community,” Boykin said. “They ought to have for the community to occur jointly for them in the way they have often stepped up for their local community.”

The fundraiser will be at 4 p.m. at Gum Creek Lodge in Baker. The celebration will attribute are living amusement by Dustin Herring, a musician from Nashville.

There also will be an auction, door prizes, raffle things, foodstuff and far more. Tickets are $25 each individual, and all resources will go straight to the Brants to assistance just take treatment of any bills not protected by insurance coverage.

“They are insured, luckily, but it’s everyone’s encounter that no subject how very good your insurance coverage is, it does not go over every thing in a catastrophic reduction like this,” Boykin stated.

Home furniture from various generations burnt up in the hearth, alongside with loved ones, newborn and wedding day pics. A slate coffee table that belonged to Beth’s mother and father had been in their den for above 30 decades. Also absent ended up linens, cookbooks, pottery and silver parts they had collected in their travels.

Debris litters Steve and Beth Brant's property on Old River Road in Baker after a fire April 11. The couple lost everything.

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“Their household was a little bit of a museum of relatives and encounters, so several issues that held higher sentimental worth, all with a tale,” Boykin mentioned. “Beth’s grandmother’s china, her good-grandmother’s kitchen desk that hosted so lots of meals from Thanksgiving to grilled cheese sandwiches.”

Boykin reported she and other individuals have shared numerous meals at the Brants’ house, but their reach has extended past the Baker neighborhood. The pair arranged a push to acquire scorching foods to Port St. Joe immediately soon after Hurricane Michael struck Gulf County and bordering areas in 2018.



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