FORT MCMURRAY, Alberta — Hundreds of people lose homes each year to wildfires, but one Canadian man lost two in one year to wildfires that burned almost 900 miles from each other.
Jason Schurman’s home in Fort McMurray, Alberta, burned to the ground in May 2016 in a massive wildfire that forced 88,000 people to evacuate. The chimney was all that remained.
This July, disaster struck the Schurman family again when a wildfire engulfed a rental property, a log cabin in Hanceville, British Columbia.
“The thought of having two homes gone in a little over a year, both to wildfires, is really mind-boggling,” Schurman told CNN on Monday.
All that remains of his log cabin is the skeleton of the house’s chimney — like the other home.
Schuman is living in an RV in downtown Fort McMurray for the time being so he can be close to work. His family has been forced to move four and a half hours away to Edmonton.
“We are still paying mortgages on two houses that don’t exist anymore and our finances have been wrecked,” Schurman said. “It’s been a year and a half and we are still nowhere near a final settlement or claim. I’m still in shock. It hasn’t really set in that they are both gone.”