BOULDER CREEK, Calif. (KGO) -- CAL FIRE said the CZU Lightning Complex Fire has destroyed 925 homes throughout Santa Cruz and San Mateo counties, the community of Boulder Creek was hit hard. Residents of Boulder Creek and Ben Lomond are being allowed to return.
On Saturday night, Boulder Creek resident Chas Crowder performed a benefit concert at Pono's Hawaiian Grill in Santa Cruz where tips and proceeds go towards the Boulder Creek Volunteer Fire Department. A link to donate can be found here.
Crowder is still evacuated and currently staying with Morgan Montecue, who performed along with Crowder.
"I have not been allowed to return home and we understand why- there's still fire burning in the mountains above us. I have several neighbors right next to me that have lost their house, I mean some literally you can see from my back porch. So we want to come together and help the way our firefighters have been helping us," Crowder said.
App users: For a better experience, click here to view the full map in a new window
Montecue currently lives in Santa Cruz, but lived in Boulder Creek for 10 years.
"My heart sank you know - so many places have burned down, so, I'm just glad we can help," Montecue said.
Megan O'Mahony returned to her home along with her husband and two daughters to find their home is completely gone.
"We were so used to seeing a house there every time we came around the corner, and this time there was nothing but the trees behind the house. It was very shocking just seeing a pile of rubble and just seeing the steps that lead up to what is nothing now," O'Mahony said.
She said they had only lived in that house for one month.
"It was our first house that we bought together and we were actually living there for one month. It was such a shock that this house was everything we ever wanted - it was built in 1908, it was beautiful and charming and irreplaceable," O'Mahony said.
She said the family has no intention on moving out of Boulder Creek.
"Seeing the house today has solidified my resolve to rebuild exactly on that land, on that property, around my neighbors, in that same neighborhood and we will be back. All the compassion around all the loss- all the people who have lost their homes, us included, even being new people- we feel so much love and we're so grateful," O'Mahony said.
O'Mahony said it's incredible to see how fickle fire can be. Her home is gone while her neighbor's home is still standing.
"The houses were built four years apart. Theirs in 1904, ours in 1908 and theirs is still there- made of the same stuff our house was made of and it's absolutely fine. There's flags hanging outside and they're still up and they are un-charred. So it is incredible to see what fire takes and what it leaves," O'Mahony said.
RELATED STORIES & VIDEOS:
- How to prepare for a wildfire evacuation
- Most destructive California wildfires in history
- Camp Fire is deadliest wildfire in California history
- How are wildfires started? A look at the causes of some of the worst in California history
- Safety tips to remember when returning home after wildfire
- How to drive safely during a power outage
- What to do right now to prep for a planned power outage
- Here's how to store electricity before a power outage
- Tips for getting through a long-term power outage
- VIDEO: How to prepare your pets in case of disaster
- The difference between containing and controlling a wildfire
- How wildfire smoke can impact your health
- What's in wildfire smoke? How it can impact your health