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Community rallies for Missouri mom who lost livelihood in fire

PATTE CITY, Mo. – The community has raised more than $25,000 for a single Platte County mom who lost her livelihood to a fire.

Hayley Hill, owner of Hayley’s Food Truck, said the fire around 1:30 am on Friday destroyed the store near her home and her food truck inside.

As a mom of three, this was her way of supporting her family, overcoming life’s challenges with coffee, pastries and brunch.

The truck has been in action for months and has been successful.

“This was our livelihood,” Hill said. “That’s how I provided for myself and my children.”

No one was injured in the fire, but the truck was a total loss.

“It was a dream of mine, and people say, ‘Your dreams go up in flames.’ They literally did, it was just taken away in one night,” Hill said. “When I walk around and see puddles of plastic everywhere, they’re my kids’ toys and they’re my kids’ friends’ toys.”

Friend and fellow small business owner, Sarah Rudis, started a GoFundMe page. As of Tuesday night, she had raised more than $25,000 in four days, surpassing her $5,000 goal.

“When one of us is down, we help each other out,” Rudis said. “I’m amazed at how many people who don’t know her have helped her, and I think it’s absolutely amazing that our community can do that for a small business.”

The grateful mom isn’t sure what happens next, but now she knows her community is behind her.

“There’s one less thing right now that I really have to think about is how to provide for my kids,” Hill said. “I’m grateful that they’re just seeing what it’s like to see people who love them, and how a community should interact with each other and how we should all interact with each other.”

The Southern Platte Fire Protection District said the damage was too severe to determine the cause of the fire, and their report is closed. It is not considered suspicious.

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