Pasco business helps White Swan fire victims

PASCO -- When Roxie Schescke heard that a Yakama Nation woman lost all the photos of her mother in a fire last weekend, Schescke knew she had to help.

So she and her company, Indian Eyes of Pasco, have become a drop-off place for donations she plans to deliver March 3 to the Yakama Nation reservation, where a wildfire Saturday destroyed about 20 homes.

Wind spread a chimney fire from one home to trees and bushes along a dry creekbed and to the other homes in White Swan, the Yakima-Herald Republic reported.

Schescke, president of Indian Eyes, said the drive to help the needy in the community is part of what she admires about the Tri-Cities.

Indian Eyes is a nationwide contracting company that works with federal projects, including Hanford. The company has supported tours of the historic Hanford B reactor by hiring tour guides.

Schescke, who is Native American, said part of the reason she wanted to help was because of her similar background.

So Indian Eyes is accepting clothing, toys, canned food, bedding and anything that could help families who have lost everything, she said.

People can bring donations to the company office at 2815 Saint Andrews Loop, Suite B, in Pasco, Monday through Friday between 8 a.m. and 5 p.m. until March 1.

Indian Eyes is among several companies pitching in to help.

First Fruits Marketing of Washington, an affiliate of Broetje Orchards, decided to donate some of its funds set aside for charity to Northwest Harvest to help provide food, said Keith Mathews, the marketing company's chief executive officer.

Indian Eyes already has begun to receive donations, including food, stuffed animals and rugs, Schescke said, and company employees also are helping out.

Schescke said she hopes to contact the woman she saw in the news who had lost photos and deliver disposable cameras and frames to help her start saving new memories.

"It doesn't take much to make a big difference," she said.

The Yakama Nation has set up a fund at Bank of America for donations, which officials will use to help displaced families and those who take in extended family.

A few families are in motels but most are staying with relatives, the Yakima Herald-Republic reported.

* Kristi Pihl: 509-582-1512; kpihl@tricityherald.com