The People Not the Fire

Some may remember that in August of 2020, our staff at the California HeartMath headquarters evacuated, along with tens of thousands of others for nearly a month. The little town of Boulder Creek, and neighboring towns in the Santa Cruz Mountains, were suddenly empty and became a featured event in the national news. It all started with a lightning storm that brought an estimated 2,500 strikes overnight, igniting 585 fires, with 2 dozen of those fires merging into one massive blaze called the CZU Lightening Complex Fire. 

The fire destroyed 1,490 homes, businesses and scorched 86,509 acres (over 125 square miles) of forest including our beloved Big Basin State Park. Even so, the fire did not weaken the human spirit and resilience of this small town community. book cover photo of firefightersDaily stories of resilience and courage uplifted us; volunteer firefighters stayed and fought the fire every day for a month, generous people from all over the U.S. helped those in need; even those who lost everything, stepped up to help others and were a powerful reminder that what matters most is each other.

The residents of Boulder Creek share their stories of resilience in a new book titled, The People Not the Fire: Stories of Resilience, which is now on There are 30 story contributors, including Deborah Rozman, President of HeartMath Inc.

Life altering events like this are happening all around the world, and it’s the stories of human resilience that demonstrate the importance of community and the gift that comes from working together in the name of care, kindness and compassion. 

The energetic shift that is happening around the world demonstrates the importance of community. We’re in this together, and to make a better future we need to work with each other and get along. Being compassionate, caring and kind are more than poetic gestures, these are heart qualities that are essential if we are to create a future that we can all thrive in. 

One final note: out of a deep gratitude from the Boulder Creek community, a portion of the book proceeds will go to the Boulder Creek Volunteer Fire Department.