House Fire Dislocates Family of 6

We have been saving for months to move back to Waynesboro, closer to our jobs and the kids' school. With four kids, one car and all our current bills, it wasn't an easy feat by any means. But, when we found the house on Walnut street, a quaint old historic brick, built in 1911 and preserved beautifully inside, big enough to fit us all comfortably AND within our budget, we fell in love! It is walking distance to our library, the local YMCA, the river, downtown and our favorite park... It really was a perfect fit and we KNEW we had to do whatever we could to make it OUR HOME. We signed a lease and were SO excited. The owner was so excited for us, that he helped us customize the house to better fit our needs. He went above and beyond to accomodate our family. We waited two months through all the updates and renovation, relentlessly annoying the contractors (kidding) and meeting all our future neighbors (loitering), mapping out how long it would take to walk (everywhere) and then, finally, last week it was DONE and we finally got the keys!! We were OVER THE MOON. On Good Friday, I packed a large load of essential items and kitchen wares, enough baby gear to keep our littlest man well occupied during the big move, a few boxes of essential clothing, shoes, all our winter coats, my brand new Mary Kay inventory (hey my new neighbors might need lipgloss!) half our living room furniture, all our linens, just to name a few. On Saturday night after a very long day of work, I loaded up the baby and his Grammy, and we headed over. I gave her the grand tour and unpacked our first load! I was exhausted and had to be back up at o-dark-thirty the next morning for work, but it was SO worth it to see some of our stuff in our little dream house at last. We were planning to move the big stuff in a truck later this week. The next morning, Easter Sunday, before the sun rose, I was getting ready for work and noticed I had several new voicemails (no-one leaves me voicemail, especially not before dawn...enter goosebumps.) It was the Waynesboro Fire Marshall requesting our presence at the "scene" on Walnut Avenue. As many of you know, I spent many years responding to many "scenes" in my former career, but never one that had my own life attached to it. Needless to say, our dream home was destroyed. It took the brave men and women of the Waynesbork Fire Department over 4 hours to put out the inferno that claimed our dream house. So many of you shared our horror as the life we carefully saved for began to swiftly unravel. We had renter's insurance.... scheduled to begin April help there. To make matters worse, our current home has been rented and we have no choice but to move out by this week's end as planned. We have no idea where we're going and if we will find something that fits in our budget and doesn't have us packed in like sardines. We are careful to live humbly so that I can be home with my children (as much as life has allowed) and we take care not to spend outside our means. We just were not prepared for this in any way. So many of our friends and family have expressed their love and concern, and their desire to help in any way. We suck at accepting the idea of receiving "assistance" but feel like we would be irresponsible not to take a helping hand when it is offered. We just need to regroup and find our feet. Our most important treasures have beating hearts and are safe among us. We have been reminded over and over the last 24 hrs, how lucky we are to be alive. The Fire Marshall feels certain we would not have made it out of that house alive, had we been there. Thank you for all your thoughts and prayers. We are forever grateful.
  • Nick Bidgood 
    • $100 
    • 68 mos
  • Carol Shapiro  
    • $40 
    • 68 mos
  • Buffy Shapiro 
    • $20 
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  • Michelle Liu 
    • $200 
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  • Amy Minard 
    • $25 
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Melissa A. Divver 
Waynesboro, VA
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