Woman Who Survived Thousand Oaks Shooting Loses Her Home to California Wildfire

Desiree Edman, who survived the mass shooting inside the Borderline Bar & Grill in Thousand Oaks, California, on Nov. 7, said she lost her Malibu house in the Woolsey Fire less than 24 hours after the tragedy.

"Two-near death experiences that you just don’t expect," Edman told CBS Los Angeles Thursday. "I’m trying to stay strong as possible for my family and my friends. And I’m trying to look at everything as positive as I can in these types of situations."

The fire destroyed the Edman family's home on Nov. 8. Her mother, Carmen Edman, said she "was in panic mode since Wednesday night – since that phone call – and stress levels were off the charts."

There was one major positive outcome though. Everyone in the family survived the fire.

"Twelve people didn’t go home. Ron didn’t go home, neither did Justin, Christina all these people that were there. Good people," Carmen Edman said, referring to the victims of the Thousand Oaks shooting.

"The fact is we made it out alive, and my sister survived, and we’re here," Edman's sister, Destiny, told CBS Los Angeles.

The family credits Ventura Country Sheriff's Sgt. Ron Helus with saving Edman's life. They made sure to be at his funeral procession Thursday.

"It’s really tragic that this happened in our city," Carmen Erdman said. "In Borderline, and that Ron had to pass. It’s just tragic."

Helus was hailed as a hero for his actions at the Borderline Bar. He entered the club with a California Highway Patrol Officer and rushed inside to confront the shooter. Helus was a 29-year law enforcement veteran and was set to retire next year.

"He went in to save lives, to save other people," Ventura County Sheriff Geoff Dean said of Helus after the shooting, reports CNN. "He was totally committed, he gave his all... and tonight, as I told his wife, he died a hero."

According to KABC, containment of the Woolsey Fire climbed to 84 percent by Saturday afternoon. Authorities said 1,008 structures have been destroyed and the fire burned 98,362 acres. Several evacuation orders have been lifted in Los Angeles and Ventura Counties. There have been three deaths linked to the fire.

On Saturday, President Donald Trump toured the devastation left behind by the Camp Fire in Northern California and the Woolsey Fire. The death toll from the Camp Fire has climbed to 71 and more than 1,000 people are missing, reports CBS News.

Trump also met with victims of the Thousand Oaks shooting during his trip.


"We just hugged them and we kissed them — and everybody. And it was very warm," Trump told reporters, USA Today reports. "It was tragic, and yet in one way it was a very beautiful moment."

Photo Credit: Getty Images / David McNew