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Fire leaves family homeless

AHOSKIE – An early-morning fire here Saturday has left an Ahoskie family homeless.

Ahoskie Rural Fire Department Chief Paul Cherry reported that the two-alarm blaze completely gutted a residence located in the 1500 block of US 13, just north of the town limits.

Cherry said a wood heater inside the residence apparently triggered the blaze.

Upon arriving at 6:12 a.m., 14 Ahoskie firefighters found the residence fully involved.

“When we first got on the scene, we were informed by neighbors that they thought the family was still inside the house,” Cherry said. “About 15 minutes later, the neighbors found out that the family wasn’t at home, but instead in Murfreesboro.”

Cherry said the affected family consisted of a mother, father and child. They rent the residence, a single story wooden structure, from Lynell Eure.

The call came in at 6:05 a.m. at which time the Ahoskie Rural department responded with four units. Due to the close proximity of another residence plus the morning’s frigid temperatures (19 degrees), Cherry summoned the assistance of the Winton Volunteer Fire Department. They responded with three units and 14 men.

Other responders included the Ahoskie Police Department, Hertford County Sheriff’s deputies, Hertford County EMS, the Hertford County Fire Marshal and one member of the Union Volunteer Fire Department.

“We thank everyone that came out to help, especially all the volunteers,” Cherry said.

The residence was a total loss with damages to the structure and contents estimated at $25,000.

Immediately following the fire, Cherry said he put the family in contact with the American Red Cross for assistance.

Ahoskie Rural firemen remained on the scene until 9:30 a.m.