A Colorado family is forever indebted to an Amazon delivery driver for saving their lives when a destructive wildfire raged across Boulder County last week.
The late-season “Marshall Fire,” called the most catastrophic blaze in Colorado history, prompted the evacuation of some 35,000 residents, including the Stanley family.
Mary Stanley said that she, her husband, Taylor Stanley, and their four-month-old son were napping at their home in Superior when they woke up around 11:12 a.m. on Thursday and smelled smoke.
When they went outside, they saw thick smoke in the air and crawling flames that were headed directly toward their house. They only had five minutes to leave before the fire reached them.
Taylor ran out and tried to start their car, but its battery was dead. He then rushed to their neighbor’s house and banged on the door to see if they could get help, but no one answered.
That’s when they realized they were the only ones left in the community. Everyone else had already evacuated.
“We have no way out of here we have to try to make it by foot,” Taylor told Mary, as the shopping center right across the street from their house was engulfed by the aggressive flames.
“I really don’t think we would have made it out because it was happening so fast and with the winds like that, the gusts were so strong my husband was struggling to stay upright and get all of our things inside the van,” Mary told KDVR.
Just as Mary started grabbing a few of their belongings, an Amazon delivery agent named Luanne showed up to deliver a bike pump that Taylor had ordered a few days earlier.
Seeing their situation, the kind driver offered the family a ride in her delivery van so she could bring them to safety.
A strong gust of wind then slammed against their gate and caused the door to lodge inwardly. They tried to pry it open but failed, so Taylor started throwing items over their 8-foot-tall fence before climbing over it. Fortunately, they had gotten their baby and most of their things out before that happened.
“She was actually pretty calm about it, she offered to help and she got us in the van and propped us up against the side and she dropped us off at the nearest community center,” Mary told the outlet of Luanne.
Their best friends came to pick them up at the center and dropped them off at Taylor’s parents’ house in Firestone.
Unfortunately, their home was burned down to the ground, like hundreds of their neighbors. The couple hasn’t decided their next course of action as they just lost everything they had, but they are grateful to be alive—and it’s all thanks to Luanne.
“We could be dead if it wasn’t for Luanne,” Mary said. “She was our saving grace. A little angel right at the moment that we needed her.”
On Friday, authorities warned against people returning to their neighborhoods as pockets of fire remain.
The wildfire was believed to have been started by downed power lines and aggravated by arid conditions and strong winds blowing up to 105 mph. The blaze ripped through entire neighborhoods at lightning speed, burning over 6,000 homes in less than 24 hours.
Colorado was among the states hit by an unexpected drought over the summer, with Boulder receiving nowhere near its usual snow and rainfall. This rare occurrence led to extremely dry conditions.
The Stanleys have created a GoFundMe to raise money for themselves and Luanne, who lost her job due to the incident. She has three children, and the family wants to give her a portion of the money they would receive from donations to help her, just as she had helped them.
Click on the video below to learn more about how this brave Amazon delivery driver rescued the Stanleys.
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