A nine-year-old girl who lost everything in a house fire is now helping other victims like herself. She's started an organization to give fire victims the essentials they need.
Lauren Hontz, who lives in Ann Arundel County, still gets emotional when she talks about the fire that took her home and everything inside it.
"It was just the most horrific thing you've ever seen. I mean it's your home, it's your life," her mother, Jennifer Hontz said.
But from that Tragedy, Lauren created Lauren's luggage. She stuffs suitcases full of blankets, night lights, children's books and other comforts she missed in those first few hours and days after her family's fire.
"A toy, a notebook, shampoo, conditioner, soap," Lauren said. "I try to give them to families after fires, like blankets, stuffed animals, those kind of the essentials. Things that would have been really helpful that first night."
Even though Lauren lost everything and didn't have a whole lot to give, her mom says she was willing to hand out whatever she had.
The luggage and everything inside is either donated to her organization or picked up from Goodwill.
Then, Lauren delivers the luggage to local firefighters to distribute to families as soon as the put out the flames.
"We're very proud of what you're doing and we're very proud here at station 17 to be a part of what you're doing," firefighters told Lauren.
She says her work is not only meant to help other fire victims, it's helping her heal too.
"it just feels nice giving people stuff and helping them out."
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Flip open the dictionary to the word new and you'll see Webster says it means, “Having existed or having been made but a short time."
At first it seemed to be just a house fire in the 5700 block of Highgate Drive in Northwest Baltimore.
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