A picture of Lela Bentley and her 12-year-old son Ryan from a GoFundMe Page.

Right before Christmas, Surrey woman with two kids loses everything in fire

Bentley, her husband, and her two boys who have health issues are now left homeless

A woman in Surrey just lost everything right before Christmas due to a house fire.

Lela Bentley and her family were displaced from their home on Monday night after an electrical fire gutted their rental house in Whalley.

Around one in the morning, Bentley woke up with a radiator blowing smoke in her face. When she got up she walked to the bathroom, the inside of the walls were on fire.

She woke up her two boys along with her husband, as they rushed to evacuate the house.

Her best friend Suzy Douglas, who spoke to the Now-Leader on Monday, said that the fire department told them that they could have been engulfed in flames if they stayed in the house five minutes longer.

She also says that this tragedy couldn’t have happened to a better person.

“She is so loved by everybody,” said Douglas. “She tells me that even when times are tough, she says ‘at least I have my boys and I have a roof over my head.’”

Now, it’s just her and her boys.

There aren’t many moms who have gone through hardships like Bentley.

Two years ago, her then 10-year-old son Ryan went into cardiac arrest, according to Douglas.

“He’s lucky to have survived that,” she said. “He was at a friends house at the time when it happened. The friend he was playing with at the time, his mom was a nurse.”

“Technically, he had died, but the nurse kept him alive for 20 minutes until the ambulances showed up.

Ryan suffers from a rare cardiac condition called ‘Wolff-Parkinson-White,’ which can cause symptoms like an abnormally fast heartbeat, palpitations and shortness of breath.

Bentley’s other son, Caleb, has low-functioning autism. His diagnosis forced her husband, Chris, to quit his job so that he could take care of Caleb full-time.

Douglas mentioned that they’ve had to pawn off some of their belongings to make ends meet.

“The things that they have are essential. Ryan has a pacemaker that is monitored by the internet, so Bentley got rid of her cell phone to make that happen.”

While Bentley and her family are happy to be alive, they are unsurprisingly distraught by the whole incident which had gutted their home while destroying all of their belongings.

Douglas and others have created a GoFundMe Page for Lela and her family to help them get back on their feet.

It means the world to Douglas to help out her best friend in a time of need.

“When we first met over ten years ago, we became instant friends,” said. “We’re able to figure out everything without judgement and we always have each others backs.”



trevor.beggs@surreynowleader.com

Like us on Facebook and follow Trevor on Twitter

Just Posted

Plans for new Surrey hospital to be updated Monday

News conference announced by Premier Horgan and health minister Adrian Dix

White Rock pier-plank purchasers celebrated

Donors received a certificate Sunday marking their purchase of a pier plank

Seniors plead to Surrey council ahead of public hearing for 1,000-plus unit development

In June, seniors in the buildings said they felt ‘left in the cold’ as plans for redevelopment materialized

Several people in custody following reports of shots fired into a Surrey home

Police say the incident happened in the early hours of Saturday morning

White Rock looking at 3.9% tax increase

Budget discussions are to take place this week

MAP: Christmas light displays in Surrey and beyond

Send us pictures of your National Lampoon-style lit-up homes, nativity scenes or North Pole playlands

B.C. universities post $340 million worth of surpluses thanks to international student tuition

Students call for spending as international enrolment produces huge surpluses at many universities

Conservative urge Morneau to deliver ‘urgent’ fall economic update

Morneau says the first thing the Liberals plan to do is bring in their promised tax cut for the middle class

INFOGRAPHIC: How much money did your local university or college make last year?

B.C. university and colleges posted a combined $340 million surplus in 2018/19

B.C. creates $8.5M organization to improve safety for health care workers

Group will bring together unions, province, health care organizations

Four men in hospital after early morning Vancouver stabbing

A large group of men was seen fighting in Yaletwon

Kovrig clings to humour as ‘two Michaels’ near one year in Chinese prison

Their detention is widely viewed as retaliation for Canada’s arrest of Chinese high-tech scion Meng Wanzhou

B.C. VIEWS: An engine that hums right along

First Nations are leading a new surge of investment in B.C.

Most Read