Montecito Fire Traps Local College Student

November 15, 2008 12:00:00 AM PST
The Santa Barbara fire burned several multi-million dollar homes and a small Christian college called Westmont College.One of the students who was trapped at Westmont College is a valley native. Hillery Gunner's mother drove down to southern California and brought her daughter back to Clovis.

Students and professors there had to hole up in the school's gym to stay safe while the fire burned dormitories and faculty housing.

Gunner says it got really scary when she had to hide in the gym, especially because she knew the fire was close and the smoke was thick. "So there was just ash raining down on the gym and they'd only give the masks to people with asthma, so the rest of us had to wrap our shirts around our faces and you could see the people who had the masks, it was just black from breathing."

Gunner wants to start a donation fund in the valley for victims. She's collecting money at her mother's business in Old Town Clovis.

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