FARMINGTON — The Boyker-Smith family lost their home and belongings in a fire Oct. 18, but they have each other and have moved forward with the help of family, friends and community members.

“Due to the hearts in this community, we have had everything we need, have been able to rebuild our home and will be able to give our kids a Christmas at home,” Pam Boyker-Smith said recently.

The family moved into a new house Dec. 18 and put up a Christmas tree soon after.

The cause of the October fire was undetermined. Boyker-Smith had left the house briefly to run errands, but her now-14-year-old son, who was home sick, was able to save their dogs and several puppies with the help of hunters passing by.

“All of our dogs are healthy and happy,” she said. “The puppies have since found their forever families. In the fire we lost two turtles, a lizard and my mother-in-law’s ashes. But one of our dogs was her dog and we are so grateful he is still here with our family as well.”

Boyker-Smith and her husband, Christian Smith, live with their five children and a grandson.

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“Watching everything we have ever worked for and everything our children knew — our safe place burning and knowing there’s nothing we could do to help or stop it — was a feeling we could never explain, broken in so many ways,” Boyker-Smith said. “Every day you remember something else that you will never see again, such as all the pictures the kids made us, the first time they wrote their names, their footprints from birth, baby books, pictures, gifts from family members and cherished possessions from family and friends that have passed away, are just a few that can never be replaced. I can never find words to explain the emotions. The worst ever is watching the kids cry when they remember or want something we are unable to replace for them.

“However, even with all the bad, our family has been truly blessed, as well, and we are staying focused on the positive side and counting those blessings daily,” she said.

The community has been a saving grace, she said, including a family friend who gave them a temporary place to stay.

The outreach, from not only their family and friends, but also their work and school families, and the community as a whole, has been generous.

“Complete strangers have reached out to give donations, hugs and prayers. Within hours of the fire we had cash, clothing and food donations and a place to stay,”
Boyker-Smith said. “The loss our family has endured has been devastating and our strength has been tested, but we have been able to pull through, and the strength of our kids is incredible. We have tried to show them what truly matters in life and that’s each other, love, kindness and faith.”

They have experienced the power of kindness and they know what it feels like to receive, she said. Now they are learning to give back.

“We still have a ways to go, but the love means more than we could ever explain —and thanks to every one of you for your love and kindness. (With) our family’s strength, prayers and God, our family will be OK,” she said.  

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This photo was taken after the Boyker-Smith family’s home on Whittier Road in Farmington burned Oct. 18. Standing in front are Connor Smith and Logan Smith. In back are Deven Boyker, Christian Smith, Pamela Boyker-Smith, Ashley Turcotte holding her son, Carter Davis, and Chase Smith.
 

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