Four days before Thanksgiving, a house fire in Barnesville tonight, left a mother, her boyfriend and their three children without a place to live. The home, which was said to be in their family for eight generations, didn’t not have insurance.
Emergency officials were called around 6:20 PM to 252 Hillside Drive for a working structure fire. Firefighters arrived to see the second story of the home fully engulfed in flames.
Displaced were Alice Schmerfield, her boyfriend Justin Boyer, and their children (ages 7, 9 and 13).
Firefighters said that all occupants were out of the home when they arrived. No serious injuries were noted.
Responding were Ryan Township Fire Company, Quake Fire Company, Hometown Fire Company, Citizen’s Fire Company of Mahanoy City, Altamont Fire Company of West Mahanoy Township, Ryan Township Ambulance, Ryan Township Police and others.
Hometown Fire Police volunteers detoured traffic for the duration.
According to courthouse records, the farmhouse was constructed in 1825. Additional owners are listed as Norma Stramara, Raymond and Minnie Haring and Edna Chapman.
Volunteers with the Tamaqua Salvation Army provided assistance to the family and firefighters.
The family of five is currently staying with a family member in a small home in West Penn Township.
This was the second fire in the region in less than 24 hours. The other fire occurred in Tamaqua the night before, and displaced three adults. (story)
An online fundraiser was started by the Tamaqua Volunteers group to help this couple and their three kids. They lost most of their belongings in the fire. The home was not insured. To donate online, go to https://www.youcaring.com/family-and-kids-who-lost-everything-on-nov-22-2015-474399.
Donations can also be given at any Wells Fargo bank branch office by mentioning that you want to donate to “Barnesville Hillside Drive Fire Victims Fund”.
Monetary donations or gift cards can be mailed or dropped off at the Tamaqua Salvation Army, 105 West Broad Street, Tamaqua PA 18252. Checks must be made out to “Barnesville Hillside Drive Fire Victims Fund”.
For more information on how to help, call the Tamaqua Volunteers group at 570-668-1234, OR call Schmerfield at 570-952-2158.
TamaquaArea.com Video Clip:
Video courtesy of FD Drone: (or HERE with scanner feed.)
Video courtesy of Frank C. D’Amato:
Video courtesy of FireAndFilm.com:
Video courtesy of Coal Region Barrett:
Below Photos Courtesy of Coal Region Fire on SmuMug:
Click HERE to view a photo album courtesy of FireAndFilm on Smumug.