Neighbors donate thousands to two families that lost homes in the wildfire

Updated: Mar. 12, 2022 at 8:25 PM CST
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PANAMA CITY, Fla. (WJHG/WECP) -A caravan of caring neighbors lined the streets of Magnolia Hills Neighborhood to collect money for the Shuman and Wilkie families. The two families lost everything when a wildfire destroyed their homes.

“It’s just a vision I had,” Troy Brown, the event organizer said. “Same thing I had during Hurricane Michael. This community came together. We helped each other.”

Brown is just one of the neighbors who helped organize this effort. Brown, along with a group of other drivers, drove through the streets collecting donations from homeowners.

“Just seeing this many people help, it makes me feel a little bit of joy inside instead of complete sadness,” Jess Shuman, the Shuman’s daughter-in-law, said.

Every homeowner in the Magnolia Hills Neighborhood NewsChannel 7 spoke with said they feel for the two families that lost everything.

“We couldn’t have gotten where we are even a week later without everybody here,” Jackie Wilkie said as she looked at the crowd of neighbors gathered together.

“To know people in this community are behind the Shuman and the Wilkie family, just makes me feel good,” Brown said.

This community raised more than $7,000 on Saturday for the two families.

“This is fantastic. This is great. I never expected this,” Paul Shuman said with a smile.

“There are no amount of thanks we have that we can give to everyone here,” Jackie Wilkie said.

Saturday’s donation was a surprise to both families, and the money was split evenly between the two.

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