Teacher grabbed cats and students' essays while fleeing the Camp Fire

6 month ago

Nearly a month since Virginia Partain escaped from Paradise, California, she hadn't been able to meet most of her students who had fled the area as well and have been displaced around the country.

Partain is an English teacher in Paradise high school. She had, for more than 20 years, taught English and helped seniors with their college essays.

She had just renovated her home when the fire demolished her town. While fleeing the Camp Fire, she grabbed the only things that were most precious for her: Her cats and her students' college application essays.

Paradise High School is still standing but without power or water and people are not allowed back. With more than 95 percent of Paradise destroyed, a temporary classroom was set in a former LensCrafters at the mall, nearby Chico.