Printer-friendly versionPrinter-friendly version Share this


Photos by Billy Ortiz and Kari Koch

May 11, 2013 (Lakeside) -- A fire this afternoon in Lakeside at Mapleview and Lake Jennings led to evacuations ordered along Mapleview, charring at least six acres, according to eyewitnesses.

Posts at the Brush Fire Partyline on Facebook and e-mails from ECM readers indicated heavy smoke in El Monte Valley. Air attacks and multiple fire units on scene have swiftly knocked down the blaze, numerous witnesses have advised ECM. Watch for further updates.

If you have updates on this incident please e-mail and also post in comments section below to inform readers. Watch for updates soon; our reporter is en route.

Sign up to receive free Viejas Alerts via e-mail at the top right side of our homepage and also receive a free weekly copy of East County Magazine.

You can also follow ViejasAlerts on Twitter for brief alerts on fires and other emergencies on your mobile phone. We recommend both since you don't know what form of communications will work best in a major regional emergency.


Error message

Support community news in the public interest! As nonprofit news, we rely on donations from the public to fund our reporting -- not special interests. Please donate to sustain East County Magazine's local reporting and/or wildfire alerts at to help us keep people safe and informed across our region.


The Hidden Story buried in this Fire


This is a Plead for our Military American Vets who were there when we needed them and now when they need us not to turn our backs.
Michele, on Mothers Day, received the worst Mothers Day gift a community could give: We sent her (indirectly & not knowing) to ICU in critical condition at the Burn unit hanging on for her life.  Michele was the Mother who was sent to ICU from being caught if the Lakeside fire Sunday.   The Fire Chief says he doesn't know how the fire started, that  this is fire season, hot heat, dry conditions, and brittle vegetation in the area are common reasons for fires.
Yet we are listening to 'rumors" that it was started by the unfortunate vets that were living homeless there.  Why, because it's easier for us to turn the other cheek and not help when help is needed.  Call it human nature or what.  The reality is we have a Lady, a Mother, a Citizen who offered her life in military service to our country so we won't be homeless.  How does that work? When we needed Michele to defend & help us, when she needs us to defend & help her...We turn our Backs?
Come on, we are better than that, Says Walter Choate who indirectly promised Michele and other homeless vets in our community that he has a business plan that will hire them, help the waste tire problem in county, save taxpayers money from diverting tires from our landfills; and with the monies received from offering these innovative recycled tire swings made into horses (Please see Website: that we can have a safe, clean, caring home for our local American Vets who for whatever reason, have found themselves homeless.
They have been getting the run around from our government officials in their respective requests for funding of this business project.  They have a business plan, working with the Small Business Administration and the SBDC to make sure their plan is reasonable, but  they are getting no where with the local officials.
I could have had Michele employed, housed, and eating a loving Mothers Day meal Sunday had our project been funded and had the community support.  I realize we can't reach those who don't want help, but I have a responsibility to reach those who do. Mr. Choate, a Vet Himself, States; You never leave your man behind & Michele is one of those.  
How can we fund a beer making business with over $650.000 saying they were going to create jobs for the local economy; only to have them go bankrupt and stick the county with debt and everything involved to sell the assets which will cost the county hundreds of thousands of dollar more.  
Then when a business comes before us with a workable business plan, Will create jobs for our local economy, save taxpayers money, bring tax revenues back into our treasury from the sells of great recycled products,... and do what's right: Snatch our American Vets out of  a hopeless situation and bring them back with the honor due them.  
Yes, we are better than that.  Let's turn this fire into a fire in our hearts; by letting Michele know we are there for her, we will work with Mr. Choate's business proposal to get this project off the ground, and she will have a home, a job, and a head start when she recovers.
Please sent cards, flowers, whatever to Michele.  Not only for her, but to let our fellow captive, homeless vets know we haven't forgotten them.   Michele's at the UCSD Burn Center, 200 West Arbor Dr., San Diego, 92103
Let her know we are here and not to let go.



As of 4:14 PM-The fire is currentlyt 6 acres and spread has been stopped. Air Tankers have been released. Good job crews.