'I woke up and I had nothing': Botwood family loses home in weekend fire

'I woke up and I had nothing': Botwood family loses home in weekend fire

A Botwood mother says her family has been left with only the clothes on their backs after their home burned to the ground over the weekend. 

Tracy Hoffe's Botwood house was destroyed on Sunday in what firefighters suspect was an electrical fire.

At the time, the Hoffe family was visiting relatives in Gander. Hoffe said RCMP notified her of the fire around 3 a.m., Sunday. Two days later, she said she's still in a state of shock. 

"It's my whole life. I've been there for 13 years, and I got 13 years of my life in that house," she said.

"Millions and millions of dollars would never recover what I lost in there. Never. Memories of my mom that passed, memories of my sister that passed, everything for my daughter.

"Like, our whole lives [were] in there."

Hoffe is now waking up in a hotel room. She said it's been hard grappling with the fact that everything in her home is now gone. 

"I've always had everything, everything. And I felt like one day, I woke up and I had nothing. I had zero. I never even had a toothbrush." 

Hoffe said the house was the only home her 11-year-old daughter Marissa has ever known. The young girl, she said, lost almost all of her school supplies.

Planning to rebuild

Hoffe said her home is insured and the family's planning to rebuild. Supporters have begun an online fundraiser for Hoffe, her daughter and Hoffe's husband, Gary. For now, the three are looking for a permanent place to stay.

Despite the ordeal, Hoffe said she still feels "blessed in every way."

"I've had a lot of support … I've had messages, I've had phone calls, I've got donations. People have been helping me left and right," she said. 

Hoffe also feels fortunate that she and her family were away from the home at the time. 

"I'll never take life for granted, ever. Ever," she said. "When I wake up and I [see] my little girl looking in my face, that's everything for me."