Fire in Rapid Valley destroys garage apartment

2013-07-06T20:00:00Z Fire in Rapid Valley destroys garage apartmentJennifer Naylor Gesick Journal staff Rapid City Journal

A fire in Rapid Valley Friday night that burned down a garage apartment  has left a family of five without a home.

Rapid Valley Fire Chief Tim Kobes said the fire might have been started by fireworks. He said it was reported just after 5 p.m. and firefighters did not leave the scene until close to 10 p.m. 

A garage apartment separate from the house was completely destroyed along with a pickup truck that was inside the garage section of the apartment, said resident Kaylee Sparks.

Only the family cat, Simba, was injured with a broken leg, singed whiskers and burns on the bottom of his paws. The big orange, fluffy cat spent the night at the veterinarian's office and will face extensive recovery efforts.

Sparks put out a call on Craiglist for help. She and her family lost everything they own and the vet bill is an estimated $800, she said.

She, her husband  Rodney and their three children — a 2-year-old boy, a 5-year-old girl, and 7-year-old boy — recently moved from Washington state to Rapid City to be closer to Rodney's father, who was having health problems, Sparks said.

"We just restarted and everything started going good," Sparks said. "And now we are having to restart all over again."

Contact Jennifer Naylor Gesick at 394-8415 or

Copyright 2015 Rapid City Journal. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed.

(1) Comments

  1. shermangerbil
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    shermangerbil - July 09, 2013 6:59 pm
    Please consider a donation big or small any amount helps. I met this young family over the weekend and they are truly good people. They had just relocated to Rapid City when this fire happened. Now they need help to cover their vet bills to fix their poor kitty's leg.

    Original post: Last Friday my family lost everything. A fire broke out in our garage converted apartment a little after 6pm (07/05/13). It took down the whole structure including all it contents, all the is left is four partial walls. I am on the pet section in search of kind hearts that will help our family cats medical treatment. My 5 year old daughter didn't care much about any of her toys, but just her kitty. He barely escaped the fire. His face is singed and his front leg is broken in two spots. The bill right now is a little under $800. Please help our family if you are able. My daughter lost all her thing and I can't let her lose him too. Donations can be given directly to the Emergency Animal Clinic at 1655 S. Valley Dr. 57703, under my name, Kaylee Sparks. Call/text (253) 880-6379, There is also a donation account open at any Great Western Bank. Also here is the link to Donate through Paypal. Thank you very much in advance for all responses. -The Sparks Family

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