Ithaca, N.Y. — A fundraiser has been started for the town of Ithaca family that lost its home in a blaze on Monday.

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Heather Swift and Brian Baker suffered a “total loss” of their home — as well as Baker’s car — in the fire. Nobody was injured.

Nearly $9,000 had been raised from 120 donors in 19 hours to help the family, according to the fundraising page. Baker and Swift are engaged, according to Julie Swain, who started the fundraiser.

“They’re doing pretty well; the Red Cross put them up last night and tonight,” said Swain, who works with Baker at

Swain said she wasn’t surprised that so much had been raised so quickly. She said that Swift is a two-time cancer survivor who is well-known around town and respected.

“She does a lot for the community, which is why there’s money coming in from all over,” Swain said. Baker, too, “has a lot of friends here,” according to Swain.

Click here to donate to the GoFundMe page.

Swift and Baker

Here’s what the page says:

We wanted to let Brian and Heather’s friends know that they experienced a great tradgedy today, 12/29. While they are physically fine (including the dogs), they lost their entire home, belongings and one car in a fire.

Heather and Brian have helped so many people with their fundraising, time, caring and positive energy. We are hoping with all they have been through over the years, we can all come together and help them out during their time of need.

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Jeff Stein

Jeff Stein is the founder and former editor of the Ithaca Voice.