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Valley couple survives food truck explosion, community rallies to raise money for medical expenses

Bama BBQ 4 Ever food truck exploded in Gilbert while owners were inside.

GILBERT, Ariz. — Robert and Amber Everson love food and love their community. The couple owns the BAMA BBQ 4 Ever food truck

Last week, they were finishing up a community event for the Adora Trails Thursday Food Truck event when Robert he heard "woof-like" noises coming from the truck. He opened the top of a gas tank and gas erupted, then there was a loud explosion.  

Robert was thrown out from the front and his chef’s jacket caught on fire. His wife Amber stumbled from the back.

“I was pulling my chef jacket off...pulling it off and all my skin on my arms ears back neck chest everything just kind of came off with it," Robert said. "And she’s coming out the back of the truck you can see flames on her legs.”   

The couple is now recovering in a burn unit. Robert is undergoing skin graph treatments and his wife Amber needed surgery for the burns on her legs. 

COVID-19 has caused many in the industry to rely on each other for support. On Saturday night, Stephanie Donaldson and other truck owners organized a fundraiser in the same neighborhood to help with medical bills.

“We work together side-by-side every day and so we all are here to support each other,” said Donaldson. 

Although that road may be long, Robert and Amber feel the love of their foodie community and are eager to get back on the grill.   

“I don’t even really have words to describe it. How people are looking out for us to try to help us get back on our feet to where we where can get back out there and get BAMA back on the road and serve the community,” said Everson. 

A GoFundMe account has been set up to help with medical expenses.