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The Prescott Daily Courier | Prescott, Arizona

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11/16/2013 6:00:00 AM
New Prescott Valley resident loses only transportation in mysterious fire
Says she hopes 'what goes around comes around'
Vickie Anderson/Courtesty photo
Vickie Anderson/Courtesty photo
Scott Orr
The Daily Courier

PRESCOTT VALLEY - When Ruth Clark moved here last month, she expected a lot of changes in her life.

But not this one.

Clark, 62, left Show Low because a friend told her the winters in Prescott Valley are more moderate. She took a job as a cook at the Central Arizona Seniors Association (CASA) and its Meals on Wheels program.

The first week she was here, staying with a friend, she had to put $300 into her 1996 van for brake work. Clark got her own apartment at the beginning of November and went to work at CASA about two weeks ago.

That's where she was Thursday at about 3 p.m. when "somebody comes in and says, 'Ruth, your van's on fire,'" she said.

Central Yavapai firefighters made quick work of the conflagration, but the van was already engulfed in flames when they arrived. It was a total loss.

"I still can't hardly believe it," she continued. "I can't go back there and look at it." She said the pavement is scorched and a nearby tree was also burned.

The van seems to have spontaneously combusted; the damage was so severe that there's likely no way to tell for certain why it erupted into flames, CYFD Fire Marshal Rick Chase said. "When it's burned like that, there's just no way to tell," he added.

Clark had insurance, but not full coverage.

"They paid the towing fee," she said, "but I only had liability (coverage) on it."

Now she's at a loss. She spent "every bit of my savings getting moved" and repairing the van's brakes. Clark has no family here - a daughter in Show Low - and just the friend in Prescott Valley.

"I'm hoping what goes around, comes around," she said. "Everybody keeps telling me not to panic, that it'll work out."

Donna Cruzen, one of Clark's co-workers at CASA, has offered to drive her to and from work, but she still needs transportation for other errands.

"She's in desperate need of a vehicle," Cruzen said.

Follow the reporter on Twitter @AZNewsguy

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Reader Comments

Posted: Monday, November 18, 2013
Article comment by: Adam Miser

For tomorrow's headline, pull my finger...

Posted: Sunday, November 17, 2013
Article comment by: chino resident

One small step to either-side of all the snippy comments here and one might be able to acknowledge just how many mysterious fires there has been in PV over the last several months...does standing-in-place to exchange uninformed opinions really seem more reasonable than considering such possibilities?

Posted: Sunday, November 17, 2013
Article comment by: no jesus

There is no Jesus so none of you ... are going to be be forgiven by your imaginary god for your convoluted comments. But the good news is you won't be going to H___ either. Miserable selfish, thoughtless human beings you are & greedy too. None of you will see this anyway because today is the day you go pay some snake oil salesman to forgive you.

Posted: Sunday, November 17, 2013
Article comment by: Jack Jones

Given the insane comments made by some regarding this story ~ and the multitude of egregious thoughts from those with obviously warped minds appearing daily in this space ~ it is time to eliminate the anonymity offered, and taken advantage of, by those whose cowardice and disrespect of others are encouraged by their ability to hide their identities. Anonymity, regardless of the context is almost never a productive policy ~ It's past time for those cowards to put up (your identity), or shut up.

Posted: Sunday, November 17, 2013
Article comment by: @ KoRenda Smuin-Breiner

AWESOME, you should be proud you posted your real name. GET A LIFE

Posted: Sunday, November 17, 2013
Article comment by: The Rev

Never mind the flagrant negatives, comment readers. Fruit of the overly skeptical and participation ribbon generation me thinks.

(Keeping good thoughts for you Ruth.)

Posted: Saturday, November 16, 2013
Article comment by: KoRenda Smuin-Breiner

To the folks who are too big of cowards to put their actual name on their comments...First of all let me start with the rocket scientist using the name "article comment"...are you really this uncaring and ridiculous to think something like that would be STAGED? Clearly you have issues. This poor woman lost her only transportation and this is how she is welcomed to our town? Second of all, to "Great Picture" you are a piece of work. Lets hope your tragedy isn't next, after all we could all assume you must "know somebody" to get so lucky as to get yourself some attention. Grow up to both of you, and you should be ashamed. Oh yeah, I did post MY REAL NAME.

Posted: Saturday, November 16, 2013
Article comment by: @Great Picture

Hopefully you are not anticipating some 'misfortune' of your own,thinking you might be front page news.....................LOL (I'm certain in no way are you suggesting this was planned or staged as another reader put it.I'm thinking most are going to read this story and a few of us will comment.I suppose that's why the Courier is in the news business and we do what ever it is that we do.)

Posted: Saturday, November 16, 2013
Article comment by: Frank Lee Confused

What incredible luck! Ruth works for Meal on Wheels. If I'm not mistaken, this service brings meals to folks who are too incompacitated to drive.

I assume that one of these helpless people has an underused automobile gathering spider webs in the garage.

The Lord works in not so mysterious ways.

Posted: Saturday, November 16, 2013
Article comment by: Where's the support for schools?

Yeah, we need public transportation. But we also need schools to attract people here to give public transportation some public to transport.

Posted: Saturday, November 16, 2013
Article comment by: No public transit in PV yet.

Yavapai Regional Transit is up and running, but won't be in Prescott Valley until next summer. We've been fighting for public transit for decades, and now public transit is here and growing. That won't fix this for this woman. I hope someone has a car to spare.

Posted: Saturday, November 16, 2013
Article comment by: Great Picture

Can anyone get front page coverage of their own misfortune? Who does one call?
Who knew who to make this happen?

Posted: Saturday, November 16, 2013
Article comment by: article comment

this whole thing is sooo staged...

Posted: Saturday, November 16, 2013
Article comment by: BREAKING NEWS!!!!!!!!!!

and front page above the fold at that,must be a slow news day.i'm quite certain that someone will be willing to lend a helping hand,we are just that kind of community.

Posted: Saturday, November 16, 2013
Article comment by: This Area Needs Public Transportation

People lose their wheels for all kinds of reasons, and it's too bad there's no fall-back solution like a reliable bus system linking the cities (or if there is, I've never seen in). I prefer traveling by feet, bicycle, motor scooter, or public trans, but I realize folks also need a car sometimes. I'm sorry for her loss, and hope the garage that fixed the brakes steps forward if it made a mistake.

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