Oprah Winfrey’s home damaged by mudslides after California fires

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As you know, California was ravaged by wildfires last year. Most of those fires have been extinguished but are still causing extensive damage. The largest among them was the Thomas Fire that affected Ventura and Santa Barbara counties. The Thomas fire has burned close to 300,000 acres, destroyed over a thousand structures and is now the largest fire in California history. And its toll just got bigger.

We were blessed earlier this week with some rain. This is the first rain we’ve had in ages. California always needs rain, even when our reservoirs are full. So normally we would welcome that but not this time. The fires left unstable ground in their wake and all fire damaged areas are susceptible to mudslides, which is exactly what happened. Again, the Thomas fire area was the most affected.

Many celebrities live in the affected area, like Ellen DeGeneres, Rob Lowe and Oprah Winfrey, all of whom thanked the firefighters profusely for saving their homes. In Oprah’s case, she wasn’t so lucky this time around. After a burst of rain and flash flooding, mud and debris slammed into her Montecito estate:

The only plus is that in Oprah’s case, the damage was only to property and not to any person or animal. As you can read in her Instagram post, that was not the case for everyone. 13 people lost their lives in the mudslides. I wish I could put a positive spin on this, but I can’t. The conditions are dangerous and precarious. Our first responders are once again being asked to risk their lives. It’s sad. The next predicted rain isn’t for ten days. Hopefully the 70+ degree temperatures this weekend will help dry things out for that area. My thoughts are with all who are affected.

Maybe instead of President, Oprah can start with the up-for-grabs California gubernatorial race? If she can put California back together, the road to the White House is clear.

From Bella Hadid’s Instagram:

My beautiful home town of Montecito…. Where my roots were placed, where my mother raised me and my family. Completely under water. I really can't believe it. I am praying and thinking so much for our friends in the hospital and their families that are still missing. For our horses, dogs, cats-all animals- that gave us happiness, who are now searching for a dry place to lay their heads.. our elementary school… The freeway to drive to school and where @mini_jk_imbig and I would walk after school.. under water. My heart is broken…. I remember when something similar happened in La Conchita about 12 years ago, so close to us and how much it took to rebuild… I can't imagine how Montecito feels now. I am so sorry. As always- Please send websites for donations. I'm ready to help. Thank you to the rescue, fire fighters and security teams in SB for staying strong and your hard work to pull out anybody and anything in sight. My love is with you so deeply SB.

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Photo credit: WENN Photos, Getty Images and Instagram

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11 Responses to “Oprah Winfrey’s home damaged by mudslides after California fires”

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  1. Renee says:

    The loss of lives is heartbreaking.

  2. savu says:

    I saw her photos from her street hit by mudslides and just thought “of COURSE she’s on the ground of the tragedy before the president.”

  3. Steph O says:

    Just FYI, the Thomas Fire is not yet fully contained. I’m heartbroken by what has happened to my community.

  4. Zondie says:

    How awful! Praying for those who are still missing.

  5. Simplyme92 says:

    17 lives lost as of now and people are still missing. It truly is heartbreaking. My mother in law, though not hurt, has not been able to leave her home since Tuesday due to the mud covering the road she lives on. I haven’t been to work since Tuesday(in Santa Barbara) as freeway is closed to get to Santa Barbara and I live in Oxnard. I am forever grateful to our first responders, they truly are amazing. My prayers go out for them and all people affected.

  6. Justwastingtime says:

    Heartbreaking…we are south of there but I know people who have been evacuated twice, completely upending their lives. Not to mention the poor people who died on Monday and Tuesday without any chance or warning to leave.

  7. lucy2 says:

    This is devastating, especially in an area already under stress from the fires. I can’t imagine how exhausted all the first responders must be by now.

  8. GirlMonday says:

    Oh no! I went to school down there. I remember when Oprah bought her property. Im so sad to see it being destroyed. Even sadder for the people experiencing (and perishing in) that destruction. My heart is heavy for them.