Victims of Montclair blaze happy to be alive

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Though two families may have lost nearly everything in a Montclair fire, they said they're just happy to be alive. (KABC)

A massive blaze ripped through homes near a Montclair recycling center, and while some victims said they lost everything, they were just happy to be alive.

The fire broke out at the metal recycling center in the 4600 block of E. State Street on Monday and destroyed two homes.

MORE: Large fire erupts at metal recycling center in Montclair

One of the homeowners, Jack Whitfield, lived in his home for more than 30 years. Despite losing everything, he was still thankful.

"Me and my wife are alive. These things can be replaced. It may take a while, but they can be replaced," Whitefield said.

The community stepped up to help the victims of the fire after they were left with only the clothes on their backs.

"Friends from our congregation have brought some clothes and other things for us because this is it. This is all we have, what we have on," Whitefield said.

Also losing their home were the young parents of a 3-year-old boy.

Diana Velasco, who is pregnant, and her 3-year-old son Andrew barely had time to escape as the roof of their home was already on fire when they ran for their lives.

MORE: Montclair family describes frightening escape from raging fire

The young couple lost everything, including two cars and cash they were saving for a new home.

"She's left with nothing. The only thing she had left was the clothes she was wearing," Joshua Velasco, Diana Velasco's brother said.

A GoFundMe page was created to help Diana Velasco and her family. If you'd like to learn how to donate, click here.
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firevictimsMontclairSan Bernardino County
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