Community supporting Southampton family who lost home in fire
SOUTHAMPTON, MA (WGGB/WSHM) - The Southampton community is now coming together to rally behind a family who lost everything in the fire in a house fire on Maple Street on Tuesday.
Multiple fire crews from across western Massachusetts worked to put out the flames. The home, which belonged to a family of three and their dog, has been deemed a total loss with nothing but ashes left on the property.
“They are a wonderful family. Bill is one of those guys who would do anything for anybody as I saw when he was supporting another friend in the end stages of his life…[He] was there doing there anything he possible could for his friend and that’s what I’m hoping to do with the GoFundMe…The whole house burnt to the ground. They came out with themselves, thank God. Bill, the two kids, the dog. They have nothing,” said Erin Menard of Southampton.
State fire investigators have determined the fire was accidental and began with a propane grill on the rear deck of the home. The state’s Department of Fire Services offered advice to prevent a propane grill fire including checking that all connections are tight before turning on the gas, never leaving a burning grill unattended, and keeping all propane outdoors and at least 10 feet away from doors, windows, and dryer vents.
Now, the community is coming together to help support the family. Menard has known Bill, the father, for years. She told Western Mass News she hopes the GoFundMe that has been set up for the family will lessen the burden of financial costs.
“That is the only house those kids know. Bill is a single father and they’ve lost a lot and this is just another thing which I just know, when he has time to collect himself, he will just be able to realize how much people do love him and are giving back to him for all the things he’s done over his years helping other people,” Menard added.
Clothing for the two children and the dad is also being collected at William E. Norris School in Southampton. The public can leave clothes in the boxes outside the front door during school hours or students can donate inside the school next to the front office.
Clothing needed includes:
Daughter (age 11) - women’s sizes, no kids:
- Shirts: Medium
- Pants: 2 or Medium
- Shoes: 10
- Jackets: Medium
Son (age 16) - men’s sizes, not kids:
- Shirts: Large
- Pants: 32x30 or Medium
- Shoes: 11
- Jacket: Large
Father - men’s sizes:
- Shirts: Extra Large
- Pants: 35x32
- Shoes: 11
- Jacket: Extra Large
In less than 24 hours, GoFundMe donations have poured in and have reached closer to the goal of $50,000.
“I just know that anytime anything has happened in this town, everyone has always rallied together to help and that’s why I’m just hoping we can get the word out a little more,” Menard explained.
The organizers of the GoFundMe also want to thank everyone who has donated so far.
Copyright 2023. Western Mass News (WGGB/WSHM). All rights reserved.