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Last July, former NBA player Charles Barkley took a time out from the American Century Celebrity Golf Tournament to check out the damage caused by a fire that swept through South Lake Tahoe. After seeing the fire’s devastation, Barkley donated $25,000 and also promised to send a generous donation to support the fire victims. And this week, as promised, the 11-Time NBA ALL Star sent the Community Disaster Resource Center (CDRC) for Angora fire victims a check for $100,000.

“This additional aid is coming at a time when the plight of the survivors has passed from many minds, and the need is greater than ever,” said CDRC Board Chairman Dick Schwarte. “There are so many families in the throes of trying to rebuild their lives so that they can stay here in South Lake, and these additional funds will enable us to assist those individuals in response to their requests.”

The Angora Fire was a wind-driven fire that started near a North Upper Truckee Road subdivision near Angora Lakes, Fallen Leaf Lake, and South Lake Tahoe in California around 2:15 PM on Sunday, June 24, 2007. The devastating fire destroyed 254 homes, displaced 3,500 residents, and caused more than $160 million in damages.

“This is unbelievable,” Barkley said after touring the area with an NBC Sports film crew. “I really want to let people know that this is really unfortunate. It’s going to take years for everybody to rebuild their houses here. If we stay over there at the golf and casino, we’re not going to think anything is going on here. That’s why I wanted to come here with a camera. When you live in different parts of the country and they show you two houses burned down, you don’t get the full effect. We need to do something like this every year we come here … to show the progress.”

In February, Barkley toured the hurricane-ravished areas in New Orleans. “That hurricane could have hit last week, that’s how bad it was. Houses were all watered out and streets were nothing but mud everywhere, and that was two years later,” said Barkley, who donated a whopping $1 million to help New Orleans residents recover.

Angora fire victims still needing assistance should contact Carrie Reiter at the CDRC to complete an application. For additional information on registering for help or assisting, call (530) 542-4656. OR to make a donation to the fire victims, please visit Help Tahoe for more info.

And don’t forget Lake Tahoe’s annual celebrity golf event that will benefit the Lance Armstrong Foundation and feature 78 entertainment and sports superstars. It takes place on July 8-13, 2008, at the Edgewood Tahoe in South Lake Tahoe. This year’s field includes Michael Jordan, Charles Barkley, Tony Romo, Dennis Miller, Ray Romano, Mario Lemieux, Dan Marino, LaDainian Tomlinson, John Elway, and Jerry Rice. First timers include NASCAR superstar Dale Jarrett, actor Aidan Quinn, skateboarding icon and babe magnet Ryan Sheckler, sports announcer Joe Buck, baseball Hall of Famer Ozzie Smith, and 11-time national sports writer-of-the-year Rick Reilly

More information can be found at www.tahoecelebritygolf.com.

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