For nearly a week, Laura Cartwright and her brother looked for their 71-year-old reclusive uncle from Helltown, a small community just north of Paradise.
They tried calling him by phone when the Camp fire broke out, but they couldn’t get through. Even on normal days, cell service there is spotty. They checked the American Red Cross shelter’s online list to see whether their uncle had marked himself safe. He hadn’t.
By Day 3, they were worried. By Day 5, they couldn’t sit at home anymore and drove up from Concord to the disaster zone. They ended up roaming a tent city in a Walmart parking lot, asking if anyone had seen their uncle.