California native Raquel Nunn moved to Haddon Heights only a few months ago, said her friend and coworker, Elizabeth Croker.
Nunn will be spending at least twice that amount of time in the hospital, as the young woman heals from the second- and third-degree burns that now cover nearly half her body, Croker said.
Nunn has no health insurance.
Everything she owned was destroyed in the explosion that leveled the White Horse Pike apartment she rented, Croker said.
"She doesn’t even have a toothbrush; she doesn’t even have anywhere to go home to," Croker said.
The severity of Nunn's injuries are such that "we’re not sure if she can actually wear clothes [right now]," she said.
So Croker, a Collingswood resident and coworker of Nunn at Ott's Greentop Inn in Berlin, is working to organize some relief.
"So far we’re taking cash; we’re taking anything," she said. "We’ll take anything, and I’ll store it in my basement until she comes out [of the hospital]."
As Nunn's family flies in from California, Croker said, they are being made to wait 48 hours before they are allowed to visit her. By Sunday evening, when she spoke with Patch, not enough time had yet elapsed for them to visit.
Nunn is being kept sedated until then, Croker said.
In the meantime, Croker said, she's also been on the lookout for Nunn's all-black cat, Leo—"the love of her life."
She described Nunn as "absolutely one of the most beautiful people I’ve ever seen, inside and out.
"She’s a hard worker, an awesome friend, she’s loyal," Croker said of Nunn. "Customers love her. This was her family. We spend 40-50 hours a week together."
Since the accident, "none of us have slept," Croker said. "We’re all trying to brainstorm [ways to help]."
On Sunday afternoon, the bar's Facebook status read:
Please keep our lovely bartender Raquel in your prayers. She still has a long road of recovery ahead of her. We are accepting donations every day and the fundraising information will be available soon.
Want to help? Croker can be reached through Ott’s Greentop: 856-767-3534.
Update, 12:43 p.m. Feb. 26: More supporters are setting up fundraisers and drives for the explosion victims, including Nunn. Get the info at Community Rallies Around Heights Explosion Victims.