Generous donations help Hugo fire victims - KTEN.com - Texoma news, weather and sports

Generous donations help Hugo fire victims

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Tonya Rivera accepts a gift card to help her family recover from a devastating fire. (KTEN) Tonya Rivera accepts a gift card to help her family recover from a devastating fire. (KTEN)
Tonya Rivera and her children give hugs to people who helped them recover from a fire. (KTEN) Tonya Rivera and her children give hugs to people who helped them recover from a fire. (KTEN)

HUGO, Okla. -- One week after fire destroyed their apartment, a family in Hugo is getting a big hand up.

Tawnya Rivera said she was flooded with donations -- everything from kitchen supplies to clothing and gift cards for basic necessities.

"Being a part of the community is meeting them at their time of need," said Hugo Walmart manager Shannon Jones. "We're going to give them $100 dollars to come in and just give back what we can to help them get back on their feet."

Music teacher Monique Cinnabaldi said she started a GoFundMe campaign on Saturday morning.

"By six o'clock in the afternoon, I had just about $300 donated from the community," she said.

Local businesses and non-profit agencies also pitched in to help the Rivera family.

"I didn't know what was going to happen," Tawnya Rivera said. "Didn't know how I was going to take care of my babies, and that's a hard thing to understand when you don't know how you're going to do what you have to do."

Now her son Dillon Rivera is learning what it's like to pay it forward.

"Breathe in... breathe out... left foot... right foot... blink... repeat... you'll always get one step further," he said.

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