December 11, 2008

Fire Leaves Granger Family Homeless

A fast-moving fire completely destroyed a Granger residence, leaving a Scotland County couple and their three children homeless. The blaze occurred Thursday afternoon, December 4th.

Homeowner Shelley Girardin told investigators she was asleep in the home after working a night shift at the hospital when a smoke alarm sounded and her son helped make her aware of the fire. She awakened to smoke and flames that she indicated appeared to be originating from the basement in the center of the home.

She was able to evacuate her son from the home and remove her vehicle from the garage as the neighbors notified the fire department.

The Scotland County Fire Department was dispatched to the scene shortly before 3:00 p.m. The Gorin Fire Department also responded to the scene. More than two dozen volunteers and nine fire trucks traveled to the scene.

Plumes of heavy black smoke, indicating the blaze had broken through the roof of the residence, were already visible on the horizon as the Scotland County Fire Department departed Memphis.

By the time the first engine arrived in Granger, the home was totally consumed by fire and was deemed a total loss.

A barbecue propane tank explosion in the garage sent the bulk of the homes roof caving in, signaling there was no chance of saving any portion of the one story home. The bulk of the main floor had already fallen into the underground basement at this time as well.

Firemen established a perimeter focusing efforts on preventing the blaze from spreading to an adjacent residence.

Family members and emergency responders could only look on as the last remnants of the homes frame collapsed into the concrete foundation where the rubble was allowed to burn itself out. Firemen mopped up around the home, extinguishing remnants of the blaze in debris that had fallen outside the foundation.

Emergency responders, including the Scotland County Sheriffís Department and the Scotland County Ambulance Service, were on the scene for approximately 90 minutes.

The cause of the fire was undetermined.

A number of fundraising efforts have begun on the familyís behalf. For more information regarding making a donation contact NEMO Alternative Energies in Memphis (660-465-2995) or the Scotland County R-I Elementary School in Memphis.



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