Carmel’s past goes up in smoke
A SUSPECTED arson attack on Carmel Campbell's shed in Borton St, Ballina, last week is the second time in five years her life has been turned upside down by a fire.
Mrs Campbell was living in Bellingen when a house fire destroyed many of her belongings and put her out of a home for about seven months.
She eventually returned to the house where she grew up to take care of her mother, who now lives in a Ballina nursing home.
But last Thursday, she heard noises coming from a shed near the house and woke to find it ablaze.
Everything in the shed was destroyed, including boxes of personal possessions belonging to her daughters Rikki and Lucy. These included journals, photos and school memorabilia.
As fate would have it, these items were being stored at their father's house in Coraki until about six weeks ago when he had to move out.
"Fortunately, the fire was not in the house, but many of the destroyed items go back four generations," Mrs Campbell said.
Detective Sergeant Mick Smith from Ballina said the investigation was continuing and police were keen to speak to a witness who helped extinguish the blaze, or anyone else who saw the fire.