Families escape fire but lose everything

6:02 PM, Jan 1, 2013   |    comments
  • Share
  • Print
  • - A A A +

An early-morning fire ripped through a Sevier County mobile home and displaced a dozen people.

A preliminary investigation points to a wood stove as the possible cause of the fire.

Firefighters responded about 4 o'clock Tuesday morning to the blaze on Parton Hollow Road near Sevierville.

The children who survived the fire ranged in age from toddler to teenager. Two families lost everything.

"They only had the clothes on their back. Some of the kids had no shoes whatsoever. They just made it out in their stocking feet," Paul Lambert with the Sevier County Fire Department said.

Two brothers and their families lived there; four adults and eight children.

They all escaped the fire with their lives but nothing else.

"They got themselves out and their children out just with the clothes on their back and some didn't have anything. The one fellow grabbed a jump suit by the door as he went out and that's the only clothing he had. One fellow had no shoes at all," Red Cross Volunteer Glen Studinger said.

Glen Studinger has put in 55 years with the American Red Cross. He showed up before dawn to offer help.

"Considering the circumstances, everybody was trying to keep the kids occupied to a certain degree, they were holding up very very well," he said.

The Red Cross is providing shelter at a motel, an allowance for clothes and food, and a guide to help with next steps.

"What agencies to call to assist them with other things such as how to get another driver's license, and birth certificates and things like that that they're lost," he said.

They also lost their family pet, a dog, and all of their Christmas gifts.

"Marines Toys for Tots called and we set up a program with them to get Christmas toys for the kids," Studinger said.

Two families will try to rebuild their lives after the home they lived in burned to the ground.

Glen Studinger will do what he can to ease their transition as an American Red Cross volunteer. "It's good to help people and see what you can do for them," he said.

Although the fire inspector has not made an official ruling investigators do not suspect arson.

Most Watched Videos