HARRIS' HEROES

Lauren's Luggage helps other victims of fire

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Lauren still cries when she talks about the fire that took her home and everything inside it.

Losing everything was devastating. But from that tragedy, 9-year-old Lauren created "Lauren's Luggage."

She stuffs suitcases full of blankets and nightlights, children's books and other comforts that Lauren dearly missed in those first few hours and days after the fire.

“Try to give them to families after fires, like blankets, stuffed animals and kind of like the essentials, what would have been really helpful that first night,” Lauren says.

“She lost everything,” says Lauren’s mother Jennifer Hontz. “She didn't have a whole lot to give, but she was willing to give what she had.”

The luggage and everything inside it is either donated to her organization or picked up from Goodwill.

Then Lauren delivers the luggage to local firefighters to give to families as soon as the flames are out.

“We're very proud of what you're doing and we're very proud here at Station 17 to be a part of what you're doing,” says Tom Best, president of the Arnold Fire Department.

Lauren says her work is not only meant to help other fire victims. It's helping her heal too.

“Because it just feels nice giving people stuff and helping them out, that's just a nice feeling,” she says.

To learn more and to help in the cause, visit Lauren's Luggage Facebook page.

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