Maclean digs deep for victims of CBD fire

By EMMA CORNFORD

THE Lower River community pulled together on Saturday night to raise more than $17,000 for residents who lost their homes in a Maclean central business district fire in February.

Leticia Cashman, who along with Tracey Marsden organised the River Street Fire Appeal Auction, said the effort had been unbelievable.

"People were just so fantastic and so giving," she said.

"It was a really good night and everyone was in a great mood. People were incredibly generous and the whole business community really pulled together to help. I think because it was the main street, it was a real focus and it touched a lot of people."

Everything from a signed football jumper to holidays went under the hammer to help the Gibson family, Daniel Perry, Chris James and his partner Christina, who were affected by the devastating fire.

"They all just sat there with massive smiles on their faces. They were really moved by the turnout and the generosity and the fact so many people wanted to help them," Ms Cashman said.

More than 180 people turned out to the event at the Maclean RSL club.

"As people came in we all looked at each other and went 'uh-oh', and Simon from the bike shop was running around getting more tables and chairs. It was a really good crowd."

The night started with a poem, written and read by a long-time Maclean resident who worked in one of the stores when it caught on fire in the 1970s.

"She wrote about her life, that fire and the fact that it wasn't time for the building to go back then, but it was its time to go this time," Ms Cashman said. "It was a really good way to start the night because it reminded everyone why they were there."



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