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One Year Later: Fire Damaged Apartment Rebuilt

Posted at 10:46 PM, May 31, 2013

COMSTOCK TOWNSHIP, Mich. — Fire destroyed a Gull Run apartment building exactly one year ago.

The cause of that fire was ‘undetermined.’

About 80 people were displaced, including Shantae Bolden.

“I heard a knock on the door, and I heard someone banging,” Bolden recalled.

“It was my neighbor, and my neighbor yelled, ‘Fire! We need to get out,’” she continued.

She said she jumped out of her bed and ran outside. Bolden saw flames spreading across her building.

“I only had time to go back in and grab a couple of things, my purse and my laptop computer,” she explained. She lost just about everything she owned.

Two days later, Bolden was allowed to go into her apartment to retrieve items. She was able to grab a large picture frame full of family photos. That includes cherished pictures of her mother who passed away two years ago.

Following the fire, Bolden’s family opened their doors for her. She now lives at Coopers Landing Apartments. That’s a few minutes down the road from her old apartment.

Today, Gull Run looks just like it used to. It’s rebuilt, and crews are putting on the final touches.

However, Bolden has never forgotten the local businesses and the community which provided basic necessities for her and the other victims.

“I’m happy that I was able to have my life. I’m happy that no one was hurt, and I’d like to thank God,” she expressed.

“I’m a believer in Jesus Christ, and I believe that God saved my life and spared me for a reason. No one was hurt, and I am thankful for that,” Bolden said.

FOX 17 learned that applications for the apartment building are piling up. Also, residents should be able to move in some time this year.

Some of the displaced tenants are moving back.

FOX 17 teamed up with several businesses in Kalamazoo County. The station encouraged people to pay it forward for the victims of that devastating fire.

Thanks to people in the community, the Deacons Conference ran out of room to store the donations before they were distributed.