Around 250 San Marcos residents stayed overnight in shelters Thursday night mainly mixed between Mission Hills High School and Escondido High School.
This all comes after the San Diego County sheriff’s department sent out 76,000 evacuation calls over the last couple days due to the Cocos Fire.
Nearly half of the evacuees stayed inside the gym at Mission Hills High School along with their pets.
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The Dahl family stayed overnight after the mobile home they have lived in for the past 19 years came a little too close to the flames.
“We were sitting her yesterday and all we saw was black smoke,” said Robert Dahl.
Mission Hills High School turned into a home for many people over the past couple days. Dozens of cots fill the school’s gym and volunteers are on hand around the clock providing food and medical care around the clock.
“My daughter is a 6-year-old and she thinks we are camping. The caregivers are great,” said San Marcos resident, Brent Littlefield.
Even family's pets are given the royal treatment. Food, treats and multiple walks a day. Eighty pets are staying at shelters mixed between Mission Hills High and Escondido High.
“Everybody has been wonderful and as far as the dog’s attention; he has gotten more attention the last couple days then he has in years,” said Elaine Gruyer.
With uncertainty of what damage the fire has left behind in their neighborhood, San Marcos residents manage to keep a positive mindset.
“The real bonus I’m gonna take with me is just realizing how good people are fundamentally. Everybody has been helping each other instead of worrying about material things,” said Littlefield.
“The cots aren’t the easiest things to sleep on but it’s manageable. All I can do is pray to go back home to my king size bed,” said Dahl.