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Author Topic: Busnut Burned Out - Lost Home and Bus. Needs Help  (Read 7686 times)
JackConrad
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« on: May 12, 2009, 03:09:00 PM »

    I just got a phone call from a fellow busnut that lives in Louisiana.  Kevin recently purchased a GM Buffalo near Ft. Myers, FL and stopped by our place for a few days on his way back to Louisiana.  He just called me to tell me they had a fire at their house today. The house and his bus were totally destroyed along with 14 pets (10 birds, 2 cats, and 2 dogs). Kevin said his parents and brothers are OK, but he suffered some 2nd and 3rd degree burns.  That is all the details I have at this time. I think Kevin posted more on the BNO BB, but he usually went by MacGyver.
   I am sure they would appreciate any help that can be provided.  If anyone wants to make a donation, Kevin's PayPal account is phyrebyrd@yahoo.com  Kevin's phone number is 318-840-9254  Jack

Click the Donate button below to open a new tab/window that will take you to PayPal and fill in Kevin's PayPal account as the recipient.
« Last Edit: May 18, 2009, 09:49:03 PM by HighTechRedneck » Logged

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« Reply #1 on: May 12, 2009, 03:14:57 PM »

Hi Jack,

Sorry to hear this..

PayPal donation done!
Nick-
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« Reply #2 on: May 12, 2009, 05:54:16 PM »

Hello Jack
I called Kevin and his situation is about as bad as it could be. He is homeless, jobless and worst of all busless. I have sent a donation and strongly urge everyone else to do the same. He has corperate telecommunication design skills and needs a job and a home. If he were closer I would put him to work. Please everyone lets give him a helping hand.
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John316
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« Reply #3 on: May 12, 2009, 06:36:11 PM »

Wow, that is tough! Poor guy. I will pray for him, and hope things turn out better for him...

That sounds like a tragic fire!

God bless,

John
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« Reply #4 on: May 12, 2009, 07:17:09 PM »

Hey John, although prayers are always welcome I'm sure but how about dishing out some of your dough? I'm sure he and his family could use that right about now along with your prayers! How about it? Instead of blessing him with JUST prayers, bless him with a gift of cash!

Right about now, that cash can go a long way!

Ace



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« Reply #5 on: May 13, 2009, 03:35:10 AM »

Hi Guy's,

Here is a reply from MAC about his fire taken from the BNO board.

Please help if you can
Nick-

Posted on Wednesday, May 13, 2009 - 5:23 am:     

--------------------------------------------------------------------------------
The loss of life ia staggering... The disaster still hasn't fully sunk in yet. I keep thinking this is a nightmare and I'll wake up... I know I won't though. I know I'm already awake... But it's just all so surreal.

Right now, financial help is what we need the most. My parents are ok. My brother is ok. Some of the animals made it... But some did not. Fourteen lost their lives today to a senseless tragedy... I keep going over in my head what could have caused it. The fire started in the garage, but there were only two things plugged in... A box fan, and a household fridge. That's it. I had an extension cord running to the bus for lights and the vacuum cleaner, and although it was plugged in... Everything was turned off. I used a bar plug with a built in circuit breaker... And it was off. I hadn't turned anything on in there for about two days.

I'd just gotten it ready to begin taking measurements... Getting ready for the floorplan designs. I keep going over what happened... I knew the birds were going to die within seconds, yet I tried to save them anyway... a futile effort. Why didn't I start the bus? Why didn't I race the engine to build up pressure and just MOVE THE DAMN THING!? I don't know. I was in a panic. I lost my bearings and sense of time. All I had was a garden hose against a fire that was already well into the attic of the house. It was still far enough away from the bus to save it... yet, I was concerned more for the lives I couldn't save, than the bus, which was my own future home. So, two homes were lost today. Not just one.

I don't know what kind of monetary damages my parents have sustained with this fire... But my own is considerable. I estimate in the garage alone, I had about $30,000 worth lost in the blaze. I had at least another $5000 that was already stored in the bus. I don't know if my computers will survive, but... There's hope for them, since the computer I'm writing on was in the house when it went up in flames. So... Maybe. These computers are my livelihood... They're what I use when I AM working, when I CAN find a contract. I can't begin to calculate what it's going to take now... I'm hoping that the damage to the bus isn't as bad as it appears, but when I get the pictures up... You'll see. It's bad. Flames tore through it nose to rear in seconds once the windshields shattered... They literally exploded from the intense heat.

Life as I knew it is done and over. I'm basically starting from square one with nothing but the clothes I had on my back, and I didn't even have a shirt on.

To those of you who've donated thus far... THANK YOU. I was able to purchase clothes and medical supplies that were desperately needed. I bought what was needed, and spent nothing on frivolous tripe. I have a little bit left, but most is already spent to put clothes back on me...

My parents made out fairly well in that department... Much of their clothing was in their room, which suffered only smoke damage. Same with my brother. I'd brought most of my clothes into the laundry room just a couple days ago when I was cleaning things out... All the clothes in the laundry room are ash.

Half my clothes were in the garage, still packed... My business suits, my motorcycle gear, my leathers.... All of it.... Gone. I'm just at a loss for what to do next.

My dad says his insurance policy for the house doesn't cover "Family Vehicles"... Well, I wouldn't classify the bus as a family vehicle... Not in the sense that it was for them to use... It was only for me. I was the only one insured to drive it. It was never intended for them to use. So, we'll se how it plays out over the next few days... But I expect State Farm will weasel out of paying for it somehow.

Anyone know how to find "book value" on one of these babies? How can I fight them? CAN I fight them?

Sigh. It's a depressing day. I'm exhausted. I need to get a shower and get some sleep.

Thanks again to those who've helped... It's more than appreciated. I hope I can on day return the kindness.

I'll post again when I can.

-Mac
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« Reply #6 on: May 13, 2009, 07:36:05 AM »

For those of us who are Christians, Ace makes a very good point. Prayer is VERY important and powerful.  But sometimes action is needed as well.  Granted, prayer is action in an important way.  And for some it is the only way they can help.  But Christ taught us to help those in need and even small amounts help.  $10 can buy food for several meals.

James 2:15-17
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15Suppose a brother or sister is without clothes and daily food.  16If one of you says to him, “Go, I wish you well; keep warm and well fed,” but does nothing about his physical needs, what good is it?  17In the same way, faith by itself, if it is not accompanied by action, is dead.

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« Reply #7 on: May 13, 2009, 07:38:03 AM »

Guys,

Here's a link to the story on the fire, also a video you can click on:

http://www.ksla.com/Global/story.asp?S=10349625&nav=menu50_2
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« Reply #8 on: May 13, 2009, 07:58:07 AM »

Yup, for those of us that are pretty poor, at this point, just 20 helps out, I am sure....

God bless,

John
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« Reply #9 on: May 14, 2009, 11:41:47 AM »

I have received a couple phone calls and emails from people that want to help, but don't use Paypal.  I just talked to Kevin and donations can be mailed to him at Kevin Nebus, 200 Benoist Circle, Bossier City, LA 71111.  Kevin said he is doing OK. Burns are not hurting as much, he is hanging in there.  He also said to thank everyone for the help he has received.  Jack
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« Reply #10 on: May 18, 2009, 09:43:12 PM »

Here is a PayPal Donation button for the convenience of anyone wishing to donate to help Kevin get back on his feet.


Clicking it will take you to the PayPal site (in a new window/tab) and automatically fill in Kevin's account as the recipient.
« Last Edit: May 18, 2009, 09:49:39 PM by HighTechRedneck » Logged
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« Reply #11 on: May 18, 2009, 11:18:46 PM »

Hey guys...  Sorry it's taken so long for me to post...  Mike reminded me this board was here too.  He told me of it when I was down in Florida and met him and Jack, but I'd been so busy tearing apart my bus for a refit that I just forgot about it and hadn't taken the time to get registered here...

So, I'm here...  And thank you to everyone who's donated and been kind...  It's pretty tough lately and we miss our animals greatly.  My parents are doing ok, so is my brother...  We just haven't figured out what we're going to do yet.

I just found out today that my dad signed a policy with State Farm that only pays for (I think) 93% of the house reconstruction costs...  Unfortunately, I have no way to help because the bus was my "home" and my only way to find work.  As has been mentioned, I'm a Telecommunications Engineer.  I design and build corporate telephone networks for a living and am "between contracts" because... Well, simply put... Nobody's buying telephone systems right now, and those that are... I can't get to.

Two homes were lost last Tuesday...  And one way of life, at least temporarily. 

I need parts for my bus to fix it.  First and foremost, I need window glass.  Windshields, door, driver, Big and Little "D" windows...  The rest I don't care about.  I'd planned to remove them, sheet them over and put in regular old RV windows anyway, just not anytime soon.  Now I don't have a choice.

Once I get my main desktop back up and running, I can resize the pix I've taken, as well as compile a couple of videos of the losses... Both material and lives lost.  Material things can be replaced, but the lives...  Well, they can't be, of course...  We miss them terribly...

As Jack first posted...  10 birds, 2 dogs and 2 cats lost their lives.  One bird was mine, one was my brothers.  The other 8 were Cockatiels and were my mother's...  One of the dogs was mine, but she was very old... The other was my mum's, she was pretty young...  One cat was my father's, one was my mother's.  All, however, were family companions that were loved every day and returned the love they received ten fold.

Anyway...  I have to change the subject or I'm going to be up all night again.  It's hard enough as it is without dwelling on the losses... 

If anyone has parts for the bus and conversion they don't need or want and would like to donate... Please let me know.  Jack said he's got a set of mirrors he can send me, so hopefully they'll fit.  The fire was so hot, that it actually melted mine...  The ones I had were good quality and were made of Aluminum and Steel...  And they just wilted over like plastic. 

I need headlight assemblies, window glass, steering wheel, dashboard, switches, relays, wire, marker lights, etc... 

I'm going to resurrect this old girl.  Her name is, at the moment, "Phoenix" unless another name comes up that suits equally well (that I like better).  The final paint color scheme will likely be red, yellow and white...  Probably some orange in there as well, but that's a LONG way from now.

It's after 1am now...  I'm exhausted.  I did manage to trace down a short going to the dashboard and terminate it (snipped the wire, no idea what it was...)  So, the bus actually runs at this point.  Though, no driver's seat at this moment... it turned to charcoal.  heh.

I think I have an old van seat around here somewhere...  It was a very nice captains chair...  If I can mate it with the seat base from the original seat, I'll have that again...  We'll see.  Not sure when I can get out to the old storage to see if it's there or not...  For some reason, I think I gave it away a few years back. 

If anyone is in the area and would like to help with the bus, or with the house...  Please give me a call and stop by!  We can have beer on-hand if that's your taste, or softdrinks.  Personally, I can't stand beer...  But I like a good Taquila Sunrise now and then.  ^.^

I'll post again later...  Thanks again to those who've called, written, prayed and/or donated!  It's GREATLY appreciated!

-Mac
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« Reply #12 on: May 21, 2009, 12:39:24 PM »

Well, for those of you keeping tabs on this thread...  A couple of developments.

The insurance company is screwing us over pretty good...  We're getting a lawyer...  We've got the name and number of one that LOVES to take on State Farm, and State Farm hates him.  He's apparently never lost against them...  And almost always gets more than what the policy was insured for.  If things pan out, I'm going to use him to sue State Farm for coverage of my bus and get it professionally repaired.

Next up...  We've found a place to live in the meantime.  It's practically across the street from our home, within walking distance and less than a minute's drive (assuming we can get across 4 busy lanes of traffic quickly... lol)...  Water was turned on yesterday.  Power should be on either today, or tomorrow and internet/cable should be hooked up tomorrow, assuming power is hooked up before the cable guy comes...  Otherwise, who knows when iNet's going to be plugged in. 

We've still got a lot of work to do, and I've yet to spend any of the donation money on the bus...  A few tools that we needed to replace immediately and some clothing so far.  I'm not touching the donations unless I have to at this point...  We'll need it to buy food and more clothing soon, as well as dog food and chewies for them.  I just hope I can find another outlet to let people know what happened and how to donate to us...  We're going to be in 'dire straits' for a while to come yet. Sad

We'll be able to have our companions back once power is hooked up to the new place...  I'm looking forward to having them back..  We miss 'em... 

Well, gotta get back over to the house and move more stuff out.  I'll update again when I can.

-Mac
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« Reply #13 on: May 21, 2009, 04:15:58 PM »

I posted this on BNO but wanted to update you guys too, so here's a copy of what I posted....

-----

Well, today wasn't very productive I'm afraid...  Though, I did take more pictures of the progress of stripping the bus... 

We also got more boxes of "stuff" out of the house, but I was only there for a couple of hours today.  I worked yesterday and the day before in the heat without taking many breaks to cool off and rest, as a result... I'm paying for it today.

Working in the heat and overstressing my body was what caused my first heart attack...  I've taken it a lot easier since then, but it still gets to me faster than before...  So, today was more relaxing and recuperating than working.

I'm going to be processing some of the pictures I've taken and post them on my Flickr account and post the link here so ya'll can see more details of what happened, and what's been going on.  I'll also be taking the opportunity to send out some thank-you notes to those of you who've helped with donations...  They've been a great help, but ultimately may be needed to help retain the lawyer...  Not sure yet if he's going to work on contingency or what yet...  I'll keep ya'll updated on that front as well once I know more.

And, like I said...  Once things are taken care of and I have money flowing again, I'll donate back into the system through Ian.  It's just going to take some time... probably a lot of time. Sad

Anyone out there need, or know of someone who does, a custom phone system built?  I build with Asterisk and use Grandstream telephony products...  I've found they're reliable and feature rich, and have a MUCH cheaper cost of ownership.  I also charge reasonable fees for building them and use off-the-shelf server components for easy maintenance... 

I also build custom computers using quality components (Asus motherboards, Kingston/Crucial memory, etc)..  So if anyone wants a computer built, I can quote a price if you'll give me the specs you're looking for.  I also build servers... 

I also build DVR's...  I built one for myself that records 4 channels at once...  2 Standard Def cable channels and 2 HD channels at once and can store about 3000 hours of television..  Mine is built from a miniature Shuttle system and uses external USB and network enabled tuners...  So, I can build those too...

Soon, I'll be building digital dashboard displays once I can get my electronic tools replaced and get my scope checked out...

Right now, I need to work...  My bus is important to me, but my family and our companion animals are more important.  My mother is extremely depressed over the loss of her companions...  I've been trying to keep myself busy enough to not think about the friends that died in the fire...  The material stuff can be replaced, and I have the memories of our companions...  But they're missed and have left holes in our hearts.  Sad  My parents are also going to need considerable financial help with the rebuild of the house since Snake Farm is estimating the rebuilding costs in excess of the policy coverage. 

So, if anyone knows someone that needs the kinds of services I can offer...  Please let me know.  I'd love to work.  The donations have helped, but obviously, we can't survive on them alone...  The initial response was truly impressive and we were surprised...  So thank you from my family and myself.

-Mac
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« Reply #14 on: May 21, 2009, 05:55:27 PM »

New photo sets up....

This first set is of some of our companion animals. All the survivors are shown... I couldn't find pics of one of the cats, my brother's bird or my mother's birds... We're still searching.

Each photo is marked with surviving or deceased in the fire...

http://www.flickr.com/photos/36522796@N04/sets/72157618596155638/

This next set is of the house...

http://www.flickr.com/photos/36522796@N04/sets/72157618596274126/

This next set is of the bus....

http://www.flickr.com/photos/36522796@N04/sets/72157618509052185/

Some of the pics for the bus are from today... after I started cleaning it.

-Mac
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