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Wedding album saved from ashes

The Brooklyn Rd house went up in flames on July 14, 2018. PHOTOS/SUPPLIED

HAYLEY GASTMEIER
[email protected]

The salvaging of a wedding album has given a glimmer of hope to a Carterton couple who lost everything, including their pet dog, in a devastating house fire last weekend.

While slightly singed around the edges, the photographs are nearly all Eilleen and Mark Lambourn have left after their rented Brooklyn Rd property burnt to the ground last Saturday night.

Firefighters attending the blaze thought they would be retrieving the bodies of the couple, who very rarely ventured out, but fortunately had decided to that night.

Now, the wider community is rallying together to help the Lambourns get back on their feet.

Eilleen said it was hard to express her appreciation to the many people who had stepped in to support them.

“We’re just so grateful,” she said.

“I don’t quite know how to put it into words, but it warms my heart that people think so much of us and are willing to help.”

The Lions Club of Carterton have gifted the Lambourns a donation, and the Salvation Army has also reached out with offers of assistance.

Carterton’s Marisa McLuckie, whose partner is Eilleen’s nephew, has set up a Givealittle page for the couple, and an email address through which people can enquire about donating items.

Eilleen, who works at Garden Barn in Masterton, said the tragedy had brought her and her husband closer together.

The wedding album of Carterton couple Mark and Eilleen Lambourn, was retrieved from their house gutted by fire.

They have been together for 39 years, and married for 13.

She said it was “unbelievable” that their wedding photos had survived the blaze.

Also salvaged were photographs of their past pet dogs, and slides of Eilleen as a young child.

She has been “painstakingly” going through the pictures, selecting the ones saveable and laying them out to dry.

“We’re blessed that we’ve got something tangible from the remnants of that rubble, that we can grasp,” Eilleen said.

“Your memories remain in your heart and your head, but it’s good to see the physical remnants of those moments in time.

“It’s wonderful, and it’s just that little glimmer.”

People who want to support the Lambourns can email [email protected], or donate through their Givealittle page: https://givealittle.co.nz/cause/wairarapa-couple-lose-everything-including-pet-dog

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