At least 17 people have lost their lives in fires that have ravaged Northern California, including the Santa Rosa fire and 14 other fires within eight counties. Two of the victims were an elderly couple: 100- and 98-years-old. Although most of the names of the victims have not yet been released, these are the details we know so far about those who tragically died in these fires. The fires are not yet contained. (If you would like to donate to a GoFundMe set up to support fire relief efforts, visit the page here.)
In addition to the victims who died, a number of people have been injured in the fires, and there were reports of about 200 people who are missing, but at least 45 of those people have been located so far.
This story will be updated as additional names and photos are available.
Eleven People Died in Sonoma County Fires
The Sonoma County Sheriff’s office reported that 11 people have died from fire-related causes, as of Tuesday evening. At least 2,000 homes, businesses, and other structures were also destroyed.
Much of Santa Rosa was under an evacuation order on Monday. Fountaingrove was hit especially hard, with a Hilton hotel and a high school among the structures that were burned.
The Tubbs fire near Santa Rosa had burned 35,000 acres already by Monday morning. The Atlas Peak fire had reached 25,000 acres. Altogether, nearly 100,000 acres had been burned in the northern California fires as of Tuesday.
27-year-old Christina Hanson was among those who died in the fires. Her family was searching for her and had reported her missing before her death was confirmed by a fire inspector, KTVU reported.
Hanson was last heard from around 1:30 a.m. on Monday when she told her stepmother over the phone that she could see an orange glow near her Santa Rosa home, KTVU reported. Her father, Michael Hanson, is hospitalized with third-degree burns all over his body.
Charles & Sara Rippey Died in the Napa County Fire
In Napa County, Charles “Peach” and Sara Rippey died in the Atlas fire, Mercury News reported. Charles, 100, and Sara, 98, lived on Westgate Drive in the Silverado Resort. Dozens of homes were destroyed. Sara was wheelchair bound. They had a caretaker, but the caretaker couldn’t reach them and was barely able to get out herself.
The couple had just recently celebrated 75 years of marriage. Their grandaughter, Ruth Gibney, told KTVU that the only thing worse would have been if one of them had survived the other.
More than 50 structures, including homes and barns, also burned in the Atlas fire. Schools are closed and residents are experiencing power outages across the area.
There are three evacuation centers in Napa County. The Crosswalk Community Church evacuation center is full. The other centers are at the Calistoga Fairgrounds and Napa Valley College.
Three People Died in Mendocino County
In Mendocino County, three people died in the Redwood Valley Fire, the LA Times reported.
The fires in northern California are among the worst in the state’s history. Many evacuation centers are already filled to capacity. Many residents were caught by surprise by the fast-moving fires and had to flee quickly, leaving valuable possessions behind. About 45,000 people are without power in Napa and Sonoma Counties.
The cause of the fires is still being investigated.
A fire is also burning farther south in Anaheim, but so far no deaths have been reported.
We will update this story as we have more information.