SALYERSVILLE – A house was destroyed by fire on Labor Day in eyesight of the fire department.
Rosalee Dixon Griffith, who rents the house located behind the Salyersville Fire Department and Salyersville Post Office, said she had made a big breakfast on Monday morning and she, her boyfriend and daughter-in-law were on the back porch drinking coffee, while her grandchildren, ages 3, 5 and 10 years old, were playing in the yard.
“My grandson ran up to the porch and asked if there were any sausage left and I told him there were plenty on top of the stove, so he ran in there to the stove, where you can see the living room, and he yelled the living room was on fire,” Griffith told the Independent.
She quickly got her grandson out of the house and everyone out into the yard, then grabbed a bucket to throw some water on the flames, but they were starting to climb up the curtains. Her family told her to get out of the building and away from the smoke and on her way out she noticed the gas grill on the porch, still hooked up to the tank from the cookout they had on Saturday.
“I looked back and saw that grill and was just afraid it would explode, so I drug it off the porch,” she said.
The grill, a riding lawnmower that was already out in the lawn and the clothes on their backs were all they were able save from the fire.
Griffith’s boyfriend walked over to the fire department to get them, who responded roughly 10 to 15 minutes after the fire started.
“Everything happened so fast and I wanted to get my stuff out of there, but the smoke was so bad you couldn’t see,” Griffith remembered.
By the time the fire department made it to the scene the fire had spread through the rooms and starting to climb up the stairs.
The fire was believed to be electrical in nature, with Griffith noting that officials had asked if she had been having trouble with her breakers throwing, but she said the house was a bit older and actually didn’t have breakers, but the round fuses. In the two years since she had lived there, she said they were having some troubles with certain outlets not working.
Despite having lost everything, Griffith said she can’t thank those that stopped to help enough for their kindness, noting that people from the fire department brought her and her family water, Officer Tussey with the Magoffin County Sheriff Department (whom she only knew by the name on his uniform and the vehicle he was driving) offered to buy them food and water, people from the new county animal shelter offered to board her dogs if she needed it, a Michelle with Family Dollar bought shoes for the kids, and even a friend of her son paid for a hotel room for them for the week.
“People have just been so good to us,” Griffith said. “I just keep running through the personal stuff that I lost, like the quilt my mom made for me before she died and the old photographs.
That’s what really kills me, but then I think what would have happened if my grandbabies were in the bed still. It could have been a real tragedy, because I wouldn’t have left without them and we all would have died.
In the flooding earlier this year, Griffith lost her car and now she’s lost her home and all of her possessions, noting this has been a really tough year.
For now, she is trying to get copies of her driver’s license and her bills in order to receive some assistance from the Red Cross, while also looking for a new place to rent for her and her family. She shared her home with her son, his wife and her three grandchildren.
Donations can be made by reaching out to her daughter, Jennifer Puckett, or herself, listed as Rosalee Dixon, on Facebook. Her daughter posted the following on Facebook on Monday night:
I’ve had a lot messaging me about sizes of clothing and shoes for everyone. I figured it would be much easier to make a post because there’s so many to try and message back. I’ll list the sizes below.
Little girl 3t-4t. Shoe size 6
Little boys 5-6, and 11-12. Shoe sizes 12 and 8.
Mens Large shirt, and 34/30 pants. Boot size 12 1/2.
Women’s medium shirts, 4-5 and 12-13. Shoe sizes 7-8 and 7.
Anyone that would like to donate can message me or Rosalee Dixon we’ll make arrangements to meet you. Those asking about money donations we will be setting up a go fund me account, or I can take fb pay as well. Or if you would rather meet we can do that as well. Please just continue to Pray for them. We appreciate each and everyone of you.