Nearly 100 Retired Nuns at Brentwood Nursing Home Near Skirball Fire Find Refuge With Staff After Being Evacuated

Mary Kowalski wasn’t bothered when she was told by the nursing home staff to pack all her belongings and get ready to evacuate. It was at 5 a.m. Wednesday, and ash-filled smoke from the multimillion dollar homes burning in the Skirball fire was all around. She got ready to leave.

These women are among the retired nuns who were evacuated from the Carondelet Center in Brentwood during the Skirball fire. (Credit: Melissa Etehad / Los Angeles Times)

These women are among the retired nuns who were evacuated from the Carondelet Center in Brentwood during the Skirball fire. (Credit: Melissa Etehad / Los Angeles Times)

Kowalski, 87, is among the nearly 100 retired nuns who live at the Carondelet Center in Brentwood — a nursing home for the Sisters of St. Joseph, a congregation of Catholic nuns.

The nursing home sits atop a hill and is surrounded by thick brush on all sides. It is also not far from the Sepulveda Pass. Firefighters Thursday worried that if winds picked up, the flames from the Skirball fire — which had already destroyed six homes and damaged 12 more — could jump the 405 Freeway and race west.

That would put the nursing home right in its path.

Read the full story on LATimes.com.