Gabe Kapler makes his living in Philadelphia, but he raised his family in Malibu, California.
The Phillies manager got the bad news Saturday that the home his sons shared with his ex-wife Lisa in the community outside of Los Angeles had burned down, a victim of the the Woolsey Fire that has scorched a deadly path through Southern California.
Kapler’s family evacuated before fire arrived
His family evacuated on Friday, but he got a call from a friend on Saturday who had stayed behind and gave him the bad news that his house had burned to the ground.
Kapler spoke with The Athletic about the ordeal. He assured that he and his family were fine, but urged awareness for victims of the fires who aren’t as fortunate as his family.
“We have a responsibility in these times to shed light on the people who are in really, really dire straits,” Kapler told The Athletic. “And there are plenty of them.”
Fires remain a threat in California
The Woolsey Fire spanning Ventura County and Los Angeles County has claimed two lives and destroyed 435 structures, according to the Los Angeles Times. Another 57,000 structures remained threatened by the fire that was 30 percent contained as of Monday, according to the Times.
Several communities remain under mandatory evacuation.
The Camp Fire in Northern California is the deadliest in the history of the state, having claimed 42 lives. It is 30 percent contained as of Monday night, according to the Times, and has destroyed at least 6,453 homes and 260 commercial structures.
“I don’t think it’s necessarily about donations,” Kapler said of how best to help. “I don’t think it’s about shining light on shelters, necessarily. I think what it’s about is talking about it nonstop. Making sure it’s on the minds of the United States. When natural disasters happen, we’re all responsible to raise awareness about various parts of the country.”
More from Yahoo Sports:
• ‘Hold up’: QB’s play call catches Halle Berry’s attention
• NFL star’s girlfriend suffers family tragedy at stadium
• Musburger sorry if anyone was ‘offended’ by tweet
• Report: Rockets break bad news to ‘Melo