La Tuna Canyon Fire Update - Campus Secure; Volunteer Clean-Up Planned
It’s been a dramatic 24 hours in Sun Valley.
While the La Tuna Canyon Fire continues to burn in parts of Burbank, Sun Valley, Tujunga, and other surrounding communities, Village Christian School is now safe – and unscathed.
“The cross still stands!” said Head of School Tom Konjoyan. “God has spared VCS after the La Tuna Canyon fire burned 180 degrees around the campus. All structures and fields were spared. The firefighters were amazing. Our staff led by Chairman of the Board Dave Bethany and Director of Facilities Mike Custer and a devoted group of parents and teachers put out hot spots and kept vigil over the campus.”
All school buildings are intact, while other facilities, including the challenge course and beach volleyball court – even the cross at the top of the ridge behind VCS – were all unharmed.
A volunteer clean-up day is now planned for 9 a.m. on Monday to get the campus ready for school on Tuesday. Anyone who is interested in helping is welcome. If you have extra cleaning supplies, including brooms, wash rags, and window cleaner, please bring them as well.
VCS staff remains stationed at the school around the clock to monitor the fire and ensure any lingering brush fires are under control.
After the fire broke out yesterday afternoon, emergency teams from across southern California rushed to the area, even maintaining watch on Wildwood Road near the school exit gate by approximately 11 p.m. Friday.
Voluntary evacuations took place Saturday afternoon as the fire began to grow, moving within mere feet of the campus by 2 p.m. The advance was anticipated by the Los Angeles Fire Department, which was positioned for structural protection.
“What an exciting day here at Village with the fire coming right down to the back of the school,” Bethany said. “I’m just so grateful for the fire department that came and really saved the day for us along with our facilities staff. They faithfully stood and prepared and kept the buildings safe along with our volunteers that showed up from the school, parents that gave their afternoon to save the school. We are just so grateful. God bless you.”
Numerous fire crews were scattered across campus, primarily focusing their efforts behind the C Building and around the softball field. The trucks began to leave at approximately 4 p.m. believing the campus was secure.
At approximately 4:30 p.m., the southern-most hill behind the softball field ignited due to the small lingering brush fires. Emergency crews rushed back to campus, now focused on protecting the nearby homes.
However, the fire was contained by 5:15 p.m. without any structural loss.
“Thank you to all of you for your prayers,” Konjoyan added. “They were heard!”