PARADISE, Calif. — It’s been six months since California’s most devastating and deadly wildfire nearly wiped out the small town of Paradise. More than 15,000 homes and businesses were destroyed in Paradise and the surrounding communities.
Since then, there has been a tremendous effort to recover the town. Hundreds of workers have been clearing debris for months. There are dozens of trucks running hourly to and from the town with building supplies and removing debris.
“There’s just a pull, like I just want to be here,” said Karin Reinolds, who works at Paradise Strong Coffee. "I want to be a part of the rebuild."
Reinolds lost her home but has lived in the town for more than 20 years. She drives 40 miles from Live Oak to Paradise every day to work at her family owned business.
Her daughter, Kayla Jacobs, said the workers in the town give her hope.
“It’s very sad," Jacobs said. "It's hard for all of us to swallow but with the workers being here and seeing what they are accomplishing every single day — it makes you feel like it’s happening. Things are coming back to normal.”
Some lots have been cleared of debris and made ready to rebuild. But many still remain full of debris such as burnt out cars and rubble.
A few businesses have decided to reopen, though many are operating out of trailers or food trucks including US Bank and several restaurants.
The town has running water but it’s not safe to drink, so many businesses have resorted to using bottled water to serve customers.
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