POJOAQUE, N.M. (KRQE) – People affected by the fires are tired and scared as they’ve been forced from their homes. Many are staying in hotels wondering if they’ll have anything left to go home to.
Isla-Jo Montoya Cordova is an evacuee from Mora. She explains, “We have a lot of heritage there. It is where I grew up, it is where I learned how to ride a bike, it’s where I swim in acequias so it’s painful to me to see my home up in smoke.”
For weeks people in Mora have been fleeing their homes to escape the flames that are taking over their land. “Mora means everything to me. I’ve lived there all my life. It’s heartbreaking. I miss my backyard. I miss my land up in Murphy Canyon. It’s bad,” said George Trujillo.
Some families have had to move around to different evacuation sites. State Representative Roger Montoya is trying to help fundraise to get evacuees a more stable, safe place to stay. He says it’s hard to watch the devastation unfold. “The situation in the mountains physically is horrific. It’s apocalyptic to see this beautiful place burning literally.”
Representative Montoya was able to help some families with accommodations at the Cities of Gold Casino in Pojoaque, where the Santa Fe Food Bank also brought food for evacuees. Gene Maes shared, “We’re misplaced because of this and we want to thank the people who have generously given and are still giving to our people in our community.”
People who have evacuated say it’s difficult not knowing what things look like back home. “The thought that your house is alone and there’s thieves around and you’re not really comfortable you know,” said Jacob Regensberg, another Mora evacuee.
Norma Romero says that everyone in Mora is like family. “It’s just been a struggle, it’s just been hard we’re thinking of everybody praying for everybody just hoping that we get to see all the people back from Mora.”
The fires are also taking a toll on the children who have been out of school and away from everything they’re familiar with. “It’s really heartbreaking that the fires behind our house my dad is out there fighting the fire for us. All these people’s houses are breaking down and I just want to thank all you people for giving us this food and this water,” said Jeremiah Duran.
But these young kids are holding onto hope because they know what kind of community they come from. Brayden Bustos says, “Mora will be back, that’s a guarantee that I know.”
If you would like to help evacuees you can donate to the “All Together New Mexico Fund”.