Fire burns two houses in West Utica, seven displaced
Fire tears through two houses in Utica, ruining just about everything for the families who live there. As our Andrew Sorensen reports, it's going to be a long road to recovery.
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UTICA, N.Y. -- Raymond and Margaret Hart's house caught on fire first Friday night.
Luckily, they were next door at his mother's.
"Somebody came knocking on the window, beating on the door, saying that our house was on fire. So we came out and the house was engulfed in flames," Raymond said.
The roof collapsed, everything they had burned, including vital medications, and their two cats and two dogs. But they have some good friends.
"Five different people offered us to go to their homes, at least that I can think of off the top of my head. And I thank them all," Margaret said.
The Red Cross gave them a voucher for food and clothing. Their homeowners' insurance agent expects they will be able to rebuild.
Judith Torres next door won't be so lucky: she didn't have insurance.
"I never knew about that in 18 years that I've been here," she said.
When the fire spread to her house, she lost everything--she and her son are now essentially homeless. The Red Cross is temporarily giving her a place to stay.
"We're going to share a room until I can get a place to go," she explained. "I'm thinking about moving to Buffalo, but I want to make sure my son is doing good out here in his own apartment first."
The community is behind all of the victims, but they're still looking for answers.
"We don't know why the Lord has done this, or if it's his reasoning, or whatever it is behind it. We don't know yet, but there's got to be something," Raymond Hart said.
Answers they hope come sooner than later.