Pregnant B.C. firefighter tries to save own house that caught fire

Pregnant B.C. firefighter tries to save own house that caught fire

Julia Flinton and Anthony Sellars both worked on the 2017 wildfires

A pregnant Cariboo-area firefighter is recovering after trying to save her own house from a fire Monday night.

“Yesterday [Tuesday] I was really sore because my adrenalin was just pushing me through, but today is better,” said 25-year-old Julia Flinton who is expecting a baby girl on March 28. Flinton told Black Press she has had to take it easy because of concerns she could go into labour pre-term.

Flinton and her partner, Anthony Sellars, are receiving a surge of support from their hockey and firefighting communities after losing everything in the house fire Monday evening at Deep Creek, just north of Williams Lake.

Flinton was home alone while Sellars was at work when the fire broke out.

“I had lit the wood stove, left the door open to let some air flow in, and gone upstairs to put away groceries and smelled something that wasn’t wood smoke and came back downstairs,” she said.

“I tried to put the couch out with buckets of water, but it just got too big too fast. I grabbed our puppy and keys and got out of the house.”

One of Sellars’ uncles arrived and tried using the fire extinguisher to put it out, but the fire was growing too rapidly.

“Anthony works about 10 minutes away and by the time he got home there were flames outside of the house,” Flinton said.

Both the Wildwood Volunteer Fire Department and the Williams Lake Fire Department attended the fire.

READ MORE: Deep Creek home destroyed by fire

Flinton said she fought fires all summer before she discovered she was 13 weeks pregnant in September.

“I had no idea and just thought I was overtired from work.”

Flinton said they had been procrastinating buying baby things, which was fortunate.

“We had a few gifts, but nothing substantial which we were quite relieved about after the fire.”

“We actually had a few boxes that we had not brought back into the house from the 2017 [wildfire] evacuation because we were both working on fires. It was a huge relief because even though we did lose everything else there is still some stuff of value to us that has a lot of memories that we still have.”

Sellars has been on the Ravens Unit firefighting crew for seven years, and is working through the winter to complete his hours to become a Red Seal carpenter.

Flinton was with the Ravens for three years, with Vesta crew before that, and this past summer was with CIFAC in Williams Lake.

“I am working with the BC Wildfire Service right now as an auxiliary doing claims,” she said.

Flinton moved home to Williams Lake in recent years after spending 10 years away from her hometown to pursue her dreams of a hockey career abroad.

READ MORE: Flinton brings Cariboo roots to the Prairies

In 2014, Flinton and her Huskies teammates won a bronze medal at the Canadian Interuniversity Sport (CIS) women’s hockey championships. She’s also been a member of the CIS Canadian women’s team and competed at the 2015 Winter Universiade in Granada, Spain.

In 2018, she was an assistant coach for the Williams Lake Midget Female Timberwolves team — the first women’s team from Williams Lake to win a provincial gold medal.

Flinton said when she moved home she wanted to give back to the community through the sport of hockey.

Flinton said she and Sellars share a love for the sport of hockey.

Sellars plays hockey for Aboriginal teams in the area.

A GoFundMe campaign created by a staff member at the Cariboo Fire Centre Tuesday saw cash donations pouring in for the couple.

As of Wednesday morning, $3,500 of the $5,000 GoFundMe goal had been raised in under 24 hours.

“Bad things happen to good people,” one person said in pledging support to the $5,000 fundraising goal.

Flinton said the support has definitely been “overwhelming and amazing.”

For now they are staying with Sellars’ father two doors down from where they were living.

“We have three dogs and a cat so it makes it easier,” Flinton said, noting the home lost in the fire was Sellars’ grandmother’s house.

“After Anthony’s grandmother passed away a few years ago he moved in.”



sports@wltribune.com

Like us on Facebook and follow us on Twitter

Get local stories you won't find anywhere else right to your inbox.
Sign up here

 

A home was destroyed by fire on the Mountain House Road north of Williams Lake Monday. Photo submitted

A home was destroyed by fire on the Mountain House Road north of Williams Lake Monday. Photo submitted

Just Posted

COVID-19. (Image courtesy CDC)
81 new cases of COVID-19 detected in Interior Health Friday

One additional staff member at Kelowna long-term care home tests positive, no new deaths

Interior Health says Salmo’s COVID-19 cases have been contained. Photo: Wikimedia Commons
Interior Health: Salmo’s COVID-19 cases are contained

Every person who tested positive has recovered

Pitchfork Eatery’s staff pose with its two Burger Month trophies. L-R: Tao Measures, Michael Hall, head chef Josh Mateschitz, Prabh Gill, John Rutherford, Ben Handly. Photo: Laura Gellatly
Pitchfork Eatery, Kurama Sushi voted Burger Month winners

Pitchfork won two awards while Kurama won Most Original

Nelson schools have stopped recycling anything except cardboard because they are unable to separate recycling to the satisfaction of Waste Management Inc., the contractor that picks up and ships recycling. Photo: School District 8
Nelson schools cut back on recycling

Recycling pick-up contractor says there is too much contamination in the bins

The Village of Salmo has told Cody Puckett and Ashley Nelson that clearing land at this property doesn’t constitute building a property according to a bylaw. Photo: Submitted
Work in progress? Salmo family, village at odds over property construction

Cody Puckett says he’s being evicted from his own land, which the village disputes

Pickleball game in Vancouver on Sunday, November 8, 2020. B.C.’s public health restrictions for COVID-19 have been extended to adult team sports, indoors and outside. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Darryl Dyck
711 more COVID-19 cases detected in B.C. Friday

‘Virus is not letting up and neither can we’

Demonstrators, organized by the Public Fishery Alliance, outside the downtown Vancouver offices of Fisheries and Oceans Canada July 6 demand the marking of all hatchery chinook to allow for a sustainable public fishery while wild stocks recover. (Public Fishery Alliance Facebook photo)
Angry B.C. anglers see petition tabled in House of Commons

Salmon fishers demand better access to the healthy stocks in the public fishery

Cannabis bought in British Columbia (Ashley Wadhwani/Black Press Media)
Is it time to start thinking about greener ways to package cannabis?

Packaging suppliers are still figuring eco-friendly and affordable packaging options that fit the mandates of Cannabis Regulations

(Hotel Zed/Flytographer)
B.C. hotel grants couple 18 years of free stays after making baby on Valentines Day

Hotel Zed has announced a Kelowna couple has received free Valentines Day stays for next 18 years

Farmers raise slogans during a protest on a highway at the Delhi-Haryana state border, India, Thursday, Dec. 3, 2020. Prime Minister Justin Trudeau rejected the diplomatic scolding Canada’s envoy to India received on Friday for his recent comments in support of protesting Indian farmers. Tens of thousands of farmers have descended upon the borders of New Delhi to protest new farming laws that they say will open them to corporate exploitation. THE CANADIAN PRESS/AP-Manish Swarup
Trudeau brushes off India’s criticism for standing with farmers in anti-Modi protests

The High Commission of India in Ottawa had no comment when contacted Friday

Nurse Kath Olmstead prepares a shot as the world’s biggest study of a possible COVID-19 vaccine, developed by the National Institutes of Health and Moderna Inc., gets underway Monday, July 27, 2020, in Binghamton, N.Y. U.S. biotech firm Moderna says its vaccine is showing signs of producing lasting immunity to COVID-19, and that it will have as many as many as 125 million doses available by the end of March. THE CANADIAN PRESS/AP-Hans Pennink
Canada orders more COVID vaccines, refines advice on first doses as cases reach 400K

Canada recorded its 300,000th case of COVID-19 on Nov. 16

Apartments are seen lit up in downtown Vancouver as people are encouraged to stay home during the global COVID-19 pandemic on Thursday, Dec. 3, 2020. British Columbia’s deputy provincial health officer says provincewide data show the most important area B.C. must tackle in its response to the COVID-19 pandemic is health inequity. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Marissa Tiel
Age, income among top factors affecting well-being during pandemic, B.C. survey shows

Among respondents earning $20,000 a year or less, more than 41 per cent reported concern about food insecurity

Victoria-based driving instructors are concerned for their own and the community’s safety with the continued number of residents from COVID hotspots in the Lower Mainland coming to the city to take their driving road tests. (Black Press Media file photo)
Students from COVID hotspots travel to Vancouver Island for driving tests

Union leader calls on government to institute stronger travel ban

British Columbia Health Minister Adrian Dix wears a face mask to curb the spread of COVID-19, during an announcement about a new regional cancer centre, in Surrey, B.C., on Thursday, August 6, 2020. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Darryl Dyck
PHSA bought faulty respirators; spent money on catering, renovations: Dix

Such spending included ‘unnecessary, unbudgeted renovations’ to the authority’s headquarters in Vancouver

Most Read