Teenagers begin recovery from burns

Three teenagers burned at a bush party in Porter Creek Thursday are still recovering. While released from BC Children's Hospital burn unit, Giles Jim and Dustin Huebschwerlen must stay in Vancouver and return to the hospital daily, said Jim's aunt, Kala Smith.

Three teenagers burned at a bush party in Porter Creek Thursday are still recovering.

While released from BC Children’s Hospital burn unit, Giles Jim and Dustin Huebschwerlen must stay in Vancouver and return to the hospital daily, said Jim’s aunt, Kala Smith.

The third boy, Jake Maynard, suffered the least severe injuries and, while still in a lot of pain, has started accepting visitors at Whitehorse General Hospital.

The three boys were standing on one side of a bonfire at Hidden Lake in Porter Creek Thursday when someone on the other side threw a jerrycan of gasoline into the fire.

“They didn’t see it happen right away until the explosion,” said Smith. “Giles was in the middle of the two boys and he got the majority of the spray from the gas and that’s why he suffered more of the burns.

“As everybody ran and scattered and took off, (another witness) was pulling up to the party and saw that these boys were on fire and ran and put them out. The boys were already kind of rolling on the ground. Dustin managed to get the fire out on his face and what not, and he started to help with Giles because I guess Giles had most of the gasoline spray on him and was still on fire. And then (Dustin) helped get the other two in the vehicle and then leave.”

Both Jim and Huebschwerlen are suffering from second- and third-degree burns on their heads and hands, said Smith.

“They are trying to deal with the fact that they will be scarred for the rest of their lives,” she added.

Jim has endured burns to 20 per cent of his body, and has been released to a hotel room near the hospital with his grandparents and father, said Smith.

Huebschwerlen is also in a Vancouver hotel with his mother and Smith is helping to organize a fundraiser at the boys’ school to help the families afford the hotel and food bills.

The evening of auctions, entertainment and dinner will take place in Porter Creek Secondary School’s cafeteria on Thursday October 27 at 5:30 p.m.

Volunteers who can help cook, set up, clean up and donate auction items are needed and admission will be by donation.

The boys and their families would like to “thank everyone for their prayers, kindness and support,” said Smith. “And they’d like to send a special thank you to Whitehorse General Hospital staff as well as to (the man) who saved Giles and the other boys’ life.”

For more information please contact Kayla Smith at 332-3258 or Kim Rumley at 456-3826 or krumley@vgfn.net.

Contact Roxanne Stasyszyn at


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