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UPDATE: Middle school, youngest boy's friend start donation efforts for family displaced by house fire

Original post made on Dec 8, 2008

Pleasanton Middle School is spearheading a donation drive for the Zuffa family, which has been displaced by a house fire Monday morning on East Angela Street.


Read the full story here Web Link posted Monday, December 8, 2008, 2:44 PM

Comments (50)

Posted by PMS PFA, a resident of Pleasanton Middle School
on Dec 8, 2008 at 5:56 pm

The Pleasanton Middle School Parent-Faculty Association is deeply saddened by the tragedy that unfolded today. We are in the process of notifying all the members of our association to donate any amount in the form of gift cards to the Zuffa family. Gift cards that can be used at any location would be preferable, but anything would be appreciated.

Cards/cash can be dropped off at the Pleasanton Middle School office.

Our thoughts and prayers are with each member of the Zuffa family.


Posted by Felicia (Ochoa)Ogden, a resident of Pleasanton Middle School
on Dec 8, 2008 at 6:54 pm

Andrew has been spreading word about collecting cash and gift cards to be donated to the Zuffa Family.He will also bring a box to set up in the office @ PMS for clothes donations. He has recieved a tremendous amount of feedback from his fellow students all offering whatever they can do to help and he is very overwhelmed with the amount of compassion and generosity he has encountered today for Devon and his family.

Thank you,
Felicia Ochoa-Ogden (Andrew's Mom)


Posted by fyi, a resident of Bonde Ranch
on Dec 8, 2008 at 7:39 pm

The outpouring of support in this town, especially involving our youth is wonderful. However, you should be reminded, this family most likely has insurance that will compensate for all their losses including food, shelter, lost clothing...everything. Those unable to give from their wallets should not feel badly.


Posted by M, a resident of Vintage Hills Elementary School
on Dec 8, 2008 at 9:27 pm

Of course they will most likely be compensated by insurance.Eventually. However timing is everything-- with Christmas 2 weeks away it certainly would be nice for the young man and his family to be remembered and embraced by the community. No donation is too small~ and I'm sure words of support are just as valued.

Good luck and God bless.


Posted by Bonnie Shamblin, a resident of Pleasanton Heights
on Dec 9, 2008 at 12:20 pm

Unfortunately, my sister recently lost her home in the Santa Barbara fire. While it's true that insurance will help, her family has been buoyed by the outpouring of support from their community. The donations are a great idea. As for the "unidentified man" who was first on the scene , he identified himself to me after the fire was out and was deeply concerned for the health and prognosis of Mrs. Zuffa. I promised Mr. Uribe I would let him know her progress. He was definitely at the right place to be of great service. Thank you, Faustino, for your kindness and cool head during this terrible emergency.


Posted by Nicole Schroeder-Joyce, a resident of Pleasanton Heights
on Dec 9, 2008 at 3:20 pm

My son has been best friends with Justin for 12 yrs ... De is a wonderful mother with a huge heart that would do anything for her children.

She would be comforted to know that her boys will be able to have some kind of christmas, clothing and "comforts" of home while she is recouperating for the next several months in the hospital.

Many thanks and deep appreciation to Faustino for bravely stepping up in a time of need .... you are a hero.

Anything that can be done to help them is greatly appreciated and I am happy to help with organizing any kind of donations.

I will be collecting pictures of the boys since they lost them all in the fire. If you have pictures from school or sports or just hanging out ... that you would like to donate .... please contact me.

Nicole
#408-420-6129
nicole.joyce@gmail.com


Posted by Sabrina, a resident of Pleasanton Middle School
on Dec 9, 2008 at 6:23 pm

oh my god! i feel so bad for him. but im going to donate


Posted by Mark, a resident of Another Pleasanton neighborhood
on Dec 9, 2008 at 6:30 pm

A neighbor of theirs also told me that the woman who was burned is a great person. He also told me that the husband races cars and stored tanks of gas in their home.


Posted by Mack B., a resident of another community
on Dec 9, 2008 at 7:10 pm

My heart goes out to the Zuffa family. I have met some terrific people who are close to the Zuffa's. It's a tragedy that I hope dose not darken the future of such a bright promising group of young men and women. The help and support given by the community to the Zuffa's is well deserved. May the pain be over quickly, And the healing be whole.

Best Regards


Posted by frank, a resident of Pleasanton Heights
on Dec 9, 2008 at 7:20 pm

Let's wait for a factual report on the cause.

Meanwhile, where in this thread is the concern and outpouring of sympathy for the poor woman who was horribly burned? Perhaps there will be a need for financial support for her medical bills and future therapies. What about her condition? Any update?


Posted by M, a resident of Vintage Hills Elementary School
on Dec 9, 2008 at 8:16 pm

Thank you, PW, for not posting the horrific picture of Mrs. Zuffa lying in the street as the other local papers did. I wonder how they would like to see a picture of their loved one so terribly injured and clinging onto life? Granted it is a public street, but a private moment that I'm sure the family did not want splashed on the front page.


Posted by ashamed skeptic, a resident of Another Pleasanton neighborhood
on Dec 9, 2008 at 8:27 pm

In my experience, home explosions of this kind don't just happen. (Comment removed by Pleasanton Weekly Online staff as hearsay or unsupported by facts.) My prayers also go out to this young mother and her sons. I have not heard if there is a husband/father around.


Posted by D, a resident of Pleasanton Valley
on Dec 9, 2008 at 8:28 pm

I, too, was disheartened to see the photo of Mrs. Zuffa on the front page of one of the other local newspapers. This is not fodder for National Enquirer - this is one of our own in a life or death moment. I felt it was in poor taste, and actually disrespectful for the family. A sellout. This was not quality journalism - only tasteless exploitation.

Our hearts and prayers go out to the Zuffa family during this time of need. We will look forward to updates on Mrs. Zuffa's condition...and notice of anything else this community can to support her and her family.


Posted by Kevin Heller, a resident of another community
on Dec 10, 2008 at 12:24 am

Just because you have insurance doesn't necessarily mean you get the value of your home in cash... or anything necessarily.


Posted by Nicole Schroeder-Joyce, a resident of Pleasanton Heights
on Dec 10, 2008 at 2:57 am

Deona is doing well .... she is in critical but stable conditon. I spoke to her oldest son tonight and he said that her respiratory signs and vitals are good and her surgery today went well.

The boys and her husband are staying with close family friends.

Please refrain from speculating about the cause of the fire or any other negatuive comments. The boys are reading these articles and I do not think that this is an appropriate discussion for this forum.

Thank you to those who have sent love, support and prayers. please cotninue to keep them in your thoughts ... it will be a long road of recovery for them all.


Posted by D, a resident of Pleasanton Heights
on Dec 10, 2008 at 9:44 am

It's good to hear that the poor lady is stable. What a tragedy!

I am interested in finding out what could cause such an explosive fire. I imagine that the scene is still being investigated as there has been at least one police car parked outside the house 24/7 since the horrible fire.


Posted by Tom Gallagher, a resident of Pleasanton Heights
on Dec 10, 2008 at 11:17 am

We are so pleased to hear that Deona is improving. This is such a tragety. Pleasanton Community always is there for each other and all of us are here to support the Zuffa family.

We will continue praying for the family and looking forward to updates of Deona condition


Posted by Kari & Cody, a resident of Downtown
on Dec 10, 2008 at 11:54 am

Our thoughts and prayers go out to the Zuffa family at this time. I think Nicoles idea of collecting photos of the boys is a wonderful idea. I have trainloads of Devon going back a few years and will be donating these. We will continue to keep De in our prayers throughout her recovery and hope for far brighter days to come for the Zuffa family.


Posted by Mark, a resident of Another Pleasanton neighborhood
on Dec 10, 2008 at 12:33 pm

I was not speculating about the cause of the fire. I was repeating what I was told by a neighbor of this family. That doesn't make it true, but it's also not speculation. I often see reporters talking to neighbors about incidents so I didn't think it was inappropriate to repeat what the neighbor said. I realize you don't know me and may think I'm making this up, but I'm not. Those are not my words, by the way. I don't know anything about 'tanks of gas', the only gas tank I'm familiar with is the one in my car, that's just what I was told.


Posted by Debbie, a resident of another community
on Dec 10, 2008 at 12:47 pm

Our thoughts and prayers go out to all of you and Keith, Justin and Devon if you need anything at all or even just want to talk please call us you have our numbers. All our love Jim & Debbie Christian


Posted by PM mom, a resident of Pleasanton Middle School
on Dec 10, 2008 at 3:00 pm

Our prayers go out to the entire family. The donations that Andrew took up right away were very appropriate, since I wouldn't expect the family is in a frame of mind to go on a shopping spree right now - uh, I suppose they are at the hospital with their Mother! Think about it - a warm jacket and some pajamas and a change of clothes/toothbrush for the first days would be helpful and compassionate. Insurance doesn't help with that. Think about how you would function with what you have on your back/in your backpack for the next 2 days!. Some people are so cynical. I hope they recover quickly and hold on to each other tight.


Posted by Resident, a resident of Bridle Creek
on Dec 10, 2008 at 4:25 pm

I am so sorry that this had to happen, especially near the holidays! Our prayers go out to the entire family and we hope that Mrs. Zuffa's condition is improving. I am so glad that their dogs were not there! It would have been such a tragedy to lose them as well. Zuffas, if you are reading this, I hope you value family and friendship, because those are the most important things!


Posted by K.S., a resident of another community
on Dec 10, 2008 at 11:38 pm

My thoughts go out to the Zuffa family <3


Posted by lo, a resident of Birdland
on Dec 11, 2008 at 9:44 am

Mark, what did you hear?

I've heard some awful reasons as to why this explosion happened; I hope they're not true...

Does anyone have updates on this tragedy? Have the police determined what the cause was?

My thoughts are with the Zuffa family... And shame on not only PW, but the Herald, as well, for having such a terrible taste in photos.


Posted by Brad, a resident of Pleasanton Middle School
on Dec 11, 2008 at 9:18 pm

Btw.


The person above me. they were not bad photos from the PW it was all the Harold.


Posted by cappello family, a resident of another community
on Dec 12, 2008 at 5:46 pm

Our thoughts and prayers are with the family at this time. Met you through quarter midgets.

The Cappello Family
Peoria, AZ


Posted by alexa, a resident of Vintage Hills Elementary School
on Dec 14, 2008 at 4:07 pm

god bless the poor little boy


Posted by frank, a resident of Pleasanton Heights
on Dec 14, 2008 at 6:36 pm

Hopefully the PW will do an update on this story when appropriate.

First and foremost, the condition of the mother is of primary interest and concern. Are there other things the community can do to help in her recovery at this point?

Second, the cause of the fire will be something we all can learn from. Disasters like these can strike any of us. If it was a gas leak, for example, knowing what failed and why may help us avoid a similar event happening in our own house.

The video taken shortly after the explosion clearly showed the front living area fully engulfed and large amounts of smoke billowing from the rear of the house. The three car garage was not involved.


Posted by Rumors, a resident of Birdland
on Dec 14, 2008 at 7:26 pm

The word on the town is that this was not a natural gas leak. A natural gas leak would not blow a house up. I'm wondering when the truth will come out?


Posted by everyone, a resident of another community
on Dec 14, 2008 at 9:54 pm

let's not think about the truth and think about the kids that are involved and the injured mother that is in the hospital.try to put youself in there shoe's and what the are going through and not having to think about all the rumors.........


Posted by Stacey, a resident of Amberwood/Wood Meadows
on Dec 14, 2008 at 11:26 pm

Rumors wrote above: "A natural gas leak would not blow a house up."

*cough*B*cough*S

A gas leak and an open flame would!


Posted by thetruth, a resident of another community
on Dec 15, 2008 at 12:15 am

For those of you who think the family will be compensated by insurance, think again. The family did not own this house anymore, it was sold at a foreclosure sale several months ago, and they were in the process of being evicted.


Posted by frank, a resident of Pleasanton Heights
on Dec 15, 2008 at 6:35 am

Before one starts to spread myths like "A natural gas leak would not blow a house up", go read

Web Link

This house exploded and resulted in one death. Just happened recently in San Rafael.


Posted by Stacey, a resident of Amberwood/Wood Meadows
on Dec 15, 2008 at 8:52 am

Rumors,
And always remember to call before you dig!

"Oooops... Anyone seen the excavator?"
Web Link


Posted by omg, a resident of another community
on Dec 15, 2008 at 9:08 am

can't you all live your own life.why don't we all pray for the family and for the mother that is critical.. My heart is there for you Keith,justin,Devon,Dee ........Love Ya .Very close family friend


Posted by Co-Worker, a resident of another community
on Dec 15, 2008 at 9:25 am

I am a co-worker of Deonna's. She is a great person and from a work perspective she is a great employee. On behalf of her fellow friends and co-workers we are all praying for her and her family. Unfrtunately we are not hearing much in the way of the update internally so I will monitor here and hopefully can provide updates to her friends here.


Posted by Rumors, a resident of Birdland
on Dec 15, 2008 at 10:03 am

People, I said "rumors". I'm just saying I wish the media would come out with a cause so that all the speculation could be put to rest. No one wants to see a family go through this and they have potentially false rumors being circulated around town.


Posted by Kari, a resident of Downtown
on Dec 15, 2008 at 11:32 am

I think it would be a good idea at this point to refrain from posting any negative comments/specualations/rumors etc....regarding this incident. I cant imgaine what positive impact this would have on anyone at this point. The Zuffa family is dealing with devistation and I think whats needed now from everyone is prayers for De's full recovery and for the family to get back on their feet.


Posted by Rumors, a resident of Birdland
on Dec 15, 2008 at 5:39 pm

The only positive that could come from the truth of this incident is that it will lessen the community's fear of a natural gas leak causing such a horric accident like this. The truth will also put an end to speculation and let the family's healing begin.


Posted by Family member of neighbor also displace from the fire, a resident of another community
on Dec 17, 2008 at 8:23 am

My 80 year old parents, my sister and two children have been displace by this fire. The "roof damage" also involved the electical and the total lost of two bedrooms. My sister and her two children lost everything! They are all living in a hotel. Although they are extremely upset over the injures of their neighbor they too are in need of help. Yes they have insurance but insurence does not pay for everything!!


Posted by Concerned, a resident of another community
on Dec 17, 2008 at 10:06 am

Do we have any update on De's condion?


Posted by Resident, a resident of Another Pleasanton neighborhood
on Dec 17, 2008 at 10:43 am

To "Family member of neighbor also displace from the fire":

I suggest contacting the PTA of your sister's children's schools - explain the situation, they are pretty good abour mobilizing the parental community in their schools. Last year, a friend of my child had their house burn, and we all donated - the successful effort was organized by our school's PTA.

Give it a try, that would be a way to get some sort of fundraising going for your family. I don't think anyone is aware of the tragedy other than what happened to the Zuffa family, but you can make that known. Best of luck!


Posted by Concerned, a resident of Downtown
on Dec 17, 2008 at 4:31 pm

To "Family member of neighbor also displace from the fire": Im sorry to hear that your family too has suffered such loss. Please specify children's ages and other useful information to help our community help your family during this time of need. Most schools will be on winter break soon therefore, maybe we can get the word out there using other resources.


Posted by Family member of neighbor also displace from the fire, a resident of another community
on Dec 21, 2008 at 10:29 am

My parents, Frank & Pasty DePiero and sister and her daughters, Nancy Duty, Amber, Elizabeth are "living" at the Hyatt Summerfield Suites in Pleasanton. My father is in need of the "Geek" computer team to get his computer to connect to the internet at the hotel (insurance will not cover that need!!). My sister's computer is being "salvaged" who knows how long that will take....she has finial's in January. The girls, Amber & Elizabeth need clothes and lunch money. Everyone of them need a big hello and we care from their community!


Posted by D, a resident of Downtown
on Dec 21, 2008 at 3:48 pm

To the Family member of neighbor also displaced: I don't know how old the girls who need clothes but I have bags of clothes I would like to donate to the family. Where can I drop the bags off?


Posted by Family member of neighbor also displace from the fire, a resident of another community
on Dec 22, 2008 at 8:01 pm

One girl is 17, the other is 18. They are staying at the Hyatt Summerfield Suites in Pleasanton. They can also be left at the house on East Angela, Frank goes there everyday.


Posted by D, a resident of Downtown
on Dec 23, 2008 at 1:41 pm

I will drop them off tomorrow sometime in the afternoon. I realize the house would be easier but I wouldn't want them to get wet. You let me know what's easier for you and your family drop off at house or hotel? It's up to you.

Merry Christmas to you and your family!!!!!


Posted by Family member of neighbor also displace from the fire, a resident of another community
on Dec 23, 2008 at 2:51 pm

The house.


Posted by Irritated, a resident of Pleasanton Meadows
on Dec 24, 2008 at 10:12 am

I don't appreciate the negativity that is being spread about the "suspicious nature" of this fire. Does anyone even stop to think that the Zuffa kids may be reading what you are posting??? And as someone who knows and was involved in helping them out do I feel upset???...no because what I did was, ultimately, for the kids and because I wanted to. You give because you want to...you shouldn't give to someone in need with conditions attached.


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