Community comes together after Sumter County woman displaced in fire

Community comes together after Sumter County woman displaced in fire

SUMTER CO., GA (WALB) - Friends and family are rallying behind a Sumter County woman burned out of her home.

Flames destroyed Kathie Toms' home of more than 20 years Monday afternoon. She and her two teenage granddaughters lost nearly everything. Just two years ago, Toms lost her husband of 40 years, Paul, to a stomach disease.

"How much more can I take. My husband passed away two years ago. He was the retired Battalion Chief for the Americus Fire Department and then this here happened. It's just been a lot in two years," Kathie Toms, victim.

The back wall of the home is completely gone and the fire melted her appliances. Firefighters were able to save a few pictures and the urn that her husband's ashes are in.

"It was cracked but it was still intact," said Toms.

"It's just really heart breaking to watch her go through this," said Paul Toms, Kathie's Son

Now family and friends are raising money to buy Toms and her family clothes, appliances, and a new home.

"We're going to have a big benefit at Lenny's market in Americus. It's looking like three bands," said

Paul Toms

There will also be a raffle, silent auction and charity rides.

"The Red Knights motorcycle club which is the firefighters motorcycle club, they're trying to get together and bring a big benefit ride down too," said Paul Toms.

Toms she says she couldn't make it through these tough times without the support of her family.

" When you're on the giving in all the time, it's hard to be on the other side of that coin. It kind of makes you stop and think, I do have a lot of friends, family and people that care about us and that's what counts, " said Kathie Toms

The cause of the fire remains under investigation. Toms and her granddaughters are now living with a friend.

Kathie Toms benefit will be held at Lenny's Farmers Market on November 15th located at 110 N Hampton St, Americus, Ga 31709.

For more information visit their Facebook page or visit Gofundme.

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