Family of 8 sifting through rubble after home burns down just days before Christmas
HALIFAX Co., Va. (WSET) -- A devastating fire in Halifax County has a little boy terribly worried that Santa won't know where to find him this year.
Five fire departments responded to a house fire on Powell Lane Wednesday afternoon, that's left one family digging through the rubble to find whatever they can.
"If there's any pictures or anything," said Raymond Chapell, who lived in the home.
The Chapell's said they're not concerned about the tables or chairs they lost in Wednesday's fire, but it's the family keepsakes that are gone that's concerning them.
"Things they've made from when they started kindergarten and it was all on the tree, their first Christmas ornaments," said Patty Chapell.
The family said they left their home around 10:30 a.m. Wednesday and got a call from the fire department around 1 p.m. letting them know their house was on fire.
The family told ABC 13 that officials believe it may have started on the back porch.
"They were working hard to, they were working hard to try to save everything," Patty said.
When the family got to the scene, all they saw was white smoke and rubble.
The hardest part for Patty was telling her six children that they didn't have a home right before Christmas and it broke her little six-year-old's heart.
"He didn't think he was going to get any Christmas presents because there was no house for Santa to come to basically," Patty said.
But even though the family is going through a tragedy this holiday season, their kids are showing what it truly means to be a family.
"Somebody gave her $40 in a shoe store and without anybody knowing she went over to Walmart and printed off our wedding picture and printed it out and gave it to us last night in a frame," Patty said of her daughter.
Right now they're living with friends as they try to find a new place to call home.
The family said they are grateful for everyone's support, but they still need more help.
If you are looking to donate, the link to their GoFundMe is here. They said they are also in need of clothes donations: Boys clothes: 3T, 5T, 8 and 10-12; Size 8 women's and large in shirts; 38-32, 2XL shirt men's.
Patty says you can drop off certain items like clothes and toys at Piedmont Pharmacy in Danville or at Sentara Halifax Regional Hospital.
You can contact the couple at (434)-728-7729 to coordinate larger drop-off items, like beds or furniture.