A Cana, Virginia, family with two small children lost nearly everything they owned in a fire June 21 on Fish Lake Road, and relatives are hoping to help them get back on their feet as soon as possible.
Authorities confirmed a June 21 fire destroyed a single-wide home on 894 Fish Lake Road in Cana. According to Cana Volunteer Fire Department Chief Richard Sowers, no injuries were reported in connection with the incident.
Sowers said no one was in the home at the time of the fire, which preliminary investigation shows began in a dryer.
The home belonged to Chad and Jennifer Marshall, who have a two-year-old boy and a three-year-old girl. Chad Marshall’s aunt, Valentina Quesenberry Parris, said the children are especially having a hard time, crying over their lost toys and wondering why they have to spend the night in different locations.
“These kids need to be back into a home and be settled and not in a hotel for a night or two. The Red Cross put them up a night and the Salvation Army put them up a night or two, but they are just 2 and 3 and they are having a hard time,” Parris said. “They are crying over their toys and personal items, stuff they were attached to. They need to get back into a home so they can just get some normalcy back in their life.”
While the Marshall family did not have insurance, they might soon be able to have a place to stay. Chad Marshall’s late mother gave him a single wide she had shortly before she died, though it’s not usable where it presently sits.
“It is still sitting on my property (in Sylvatus, Virginia),” Parris said. “It just needs to be moved. It does need some work because it has been sitting for five years. They just need it moved,” Parris said. “I think it (moving) is fairly expensive. We need some resources to get the home from here to Cana. It’s a saving grace that my sister kept the home. It just needs to be moved, but will need a lot of work for them to live in. It doesn’t have appliances, needs installation, needs the roof fixed and flooring, but it is a home, and I’m hoping people with a good heart may want to help this family and get them back into a home.”
Parris said the home the family lived in was a total loss, including all the contents. What didn’t get burned was either lost to melting or to water damage. Many precious family mementos were lost, which Parris said was especially tough for her nephew because both his parents are deceased.
“My main goal is to get them this home that was a Godsend. My sister is gone but she’s still looking after everybody. We just want to get these kids back in the home and get them settled,” Parris said. “They are still young, they can heal from it. The girl is very smart and remembers everything. She keeps saying over and over, ‘We don’t have a home anymore. Our house is all gone. Fire got the house.’ She thinks her papa can just pull it with a tractor, but it doesn’t work that way.”
For those wishing to help, Parris said the girl is a big fan of Minnie Mouse, the Mickey Mouse Clubhouse and Bubble Guppies, while the boy loves toy tractors and hot wheels. The girl wears size 6x clothes, while the boys wears 2T. Jennifer Marshall wears size 11 pants and a large shirt, while Chad Marshall wears size 42 pants and XL shirts. Parris said the mobile home does have axles and wheels, but that the tires may be dry rotted.
“You can’t replace family photos and mementos, but getting them back into a home and letting the kids know they are okay, that is the biggest goal,” Parris said. “We’d just like to hear from a mover to find out a price so we can save money and get this home for them set up as soon as possible. They need to get on with their lives and heal together as a family unit.”
Parris said anyone wishing to help may call (276) 766-0304 or contact Jennifer Duncan Marshall on Facebook.
Allen Worrell can be reached at (276) 779-4062 or on Twitter@AWorrellTCN