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Residents of Middletown Find Hope

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LAKE COUNTY --

Sharon Dawson spent Wednesday afternoon visiting with friends and relatives in the one corner of her Middletown property that wasn't destroyed by the Valley Fire: her garden.

Seeing the news crew approaching, Dawson asked if we were looking for tragedy or drama.  She'd had enough of those and wasn't interested.

"We're looking for hope," FOX40 told her.

"Well that would be me," she responded.

Dawson, a photographer and writer, is the founder of The Wave of Hope, an organization dedicated to suicide prevention and support for people suffering with depression. It is on the web at http://www.thewaveofhope.org

Long after the insurance and federal disaster-relief checks are cut, the kind of support provided by residents like Dawson will continue paying emotional dividends around Middletown.

"Everybody is going to help everybody here," Dawson said of her community.  "We'll take care of each other."

Having lived in Middletown for 28 years, Dawson, whose home was insured, looks forward to rebuilding.

"This is my home. This is where I belong."