Friends and family are coming to grips with the loss of a member of their community after a fatal house fire on Wednesday.

Sherri Nicholls died after she was trapped inside her Varsity home when it burst into flames in the early morning hours.

Sherri’s teenaged son Danny managed to escape the blaze and her husband, Dave, and daughter, Sam, were not home at the time of the fire.

Sherri’s death was just the latest blow for the family who were already struggling with a family concern.

Sam, 23, has been in hospital preparing for a bone marrow transplant as she battles leukemia.

That is why she and her father weren't at home when the fire happened.

The family is understandably devastated and has lost everything in the fire.

Friends are starting a trust fund and have been collecting gift cards so the family can get some basic necessities.

A facebook page has also been started to collect items for the family. The page lists the items they need and what has been donated so far.

The family’s two miniature poodles, Wiki and Annie, are still missing.

Anyone who sees either of the dogs is asked to contact Calgary Animal Services.