Fire burns down Valdosta Firefighter's home - WALB.com, Albany News, Weather, Sports

Fire burns down Valdosta Firefighter's home

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VALDOSTA, GA (WALB) -

A Valdosta City firefighter is rebuilding his life after a fire burned his family's Lakeland home to the ground. Part of his homeowners insurance will cover what's left of his mortgage, but his property is gone forever.

Valdosta firefighter Chuck Jones came home Sunday morning to find his house on Main Street burned to the ground. He says it's the loss of the irreplaceable items that hurts the most.

"Blankets, shirts, shoes, you can buy all that stuff. But collectibles like family heirlooms and pictures, you can never replace them," said Jones.

Jones, his wife, and two daughters were in Florida when their home caught fire.

One of the only things found after the fire were some crayons, found in the desk where the girls used to do their homework.

Jones says his home owners insurance will only cover the debt he owed on the house. Since he didn't have content insurance, it's up to him to replace all of his personal possessions. Jones says he wishes he would have been home that night.

"If I had been here, I might have heard the smoke alarms going off and might I have stopped it earlier, but then again you just don't know," said Jones. 

His16 year-old daughter Chelsea says it's not the items that she misses but the comfort of her home.

"Just walking up the walkway, coming home from school or something, and not having a house," said Chelsea. 

This home has been in Jones' family for 100 years, and he's been living in it his entire life. He says the only thing he can do is move on.

"We'll start the clean up process, get this out of sight and out of mind, and everything will start getting better," said Jones.

The family is living in a barn on the property until they can figure out where to go from here. The cause of the fire is still undetermined.

If you would like to help the family in any way, you can drop off a donation at any Farmers and Merchants Bank in Valdosta and Lakeland.  

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