Nightmare came true: Maui couple visiting San Francisco Bay Area lost home, pets

Kimo and Steff Kirkman's nightmare came true.

The couple was in the Bay when fires broke out in Maui, where they live. 

On Wednesday, the pair was crying in line at Oakland International Airport, worried sick about their home, their pets and their children. They cut their trip short to fly home.

When they touched down in Hawaii, they felt lucky that their two daughters were OK. 

But their house was destroyed by the raging fires in Maui, spurred on by Hurricane Dora winds. 

Their beloved dogs Nori, Bruno and cat, Honi, were gone, as were most all their possessions.

In an interview from the airport, the Kirkman's told KTVU their daughter tried to rescue the dogs, but police wouldn't let her into the town because the fire was spreading so quickly. Their dogs' tracking devices showed they had been in their burned home. 


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The devastation from the wildfires was a shocking site as people began surveying the damage to the historic town of Lahaina in Maui Wednesday.

"We just hope and pray the smoke inhalation got them and they just went to sleep, they didn't suffer," Steff Baku-Kirkman said.  "It was just numbing to the heart and to the mind. But I know people who have lost more. We have two cars, two suitcases and our lives."

The Kirkmans said they had been preparing to move to the San Francisco Bay Area to take a job in Castro Valley. 

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They had most of their belongings boxed up for the move. They said their two daughters, fortunately had been away. One had just moved, and the other was on the other side of Maui when the fire broke out. 

Most of what they have left were in the two suitcases they brought back from the Bay Area, their friends, Ralph and Cindy Vitales wrote in a GoFundMe to help replace their items. 

By Thursday morning, at least 36 people have died in the Maui blazes, which have swept across the island, destroying the centuries-old Lahaina Town, a favorite of tourists and the Kirkman's home. Theirs is also one of the more than 270 homes that were damaged or destroyed. 

"The whole town is gone," Kimo Kirkman said through tears before he flew home. "If the house burned down we have nothing. We have two cars, that’s it. And what we have right here."

IF YOU'RE INTERESTED in helping the Kirkman's click here.