Family survives devastating Sumter Co. fire - WALB.com, South Georgia News, Weather, Sports

Family survives devastating Sumter Co. fire

Leroy Henderson Leroy Henderson
Christopher Osborne Christopher Osborne
SUMTER CO., GA (WALB) -

A Sumter County man is thankful his family escaped a house fire without harm.

The mobile home on Lake Ridge Extension caught fire around 11:00 Tuesday morning. Firefighters were able to save some of the home, but not before the fire spread through the ceiling.

Leroy Henderson is obviously upset about his home catching fire but also says it could have been much worse.  "All the flames and stuff went straight to the roof," said Leroy Henderson. "A memory is something that we're going to keep forever. But my kids, I love my young'ns.

The back corner of Leroy Henderson's home is merely charred remains after a fire that started shortly after Henderson started doing laundry.

"I came around the wall, my corner, and there was a big wall of fire and smoke," said Henderson.

The flames quickly spread up the wall and into the attic. Henderson's son grabbed the hose but the 28 degree temperature rendered it useless.

"When the water hose was frozen, I told him I was going to get my medicine, and I'm going to get out of here. So we got out," said Henderson.

The next several minutes the home burned until firefighters arrived. Although Henderson and his son got out safely, the memories that burned with the home are hard to replace.

"Everything happened here, like everything. You can't replace that. You can't get none of the memories back. And that hurts. That really does," said his son, Christopher Osborne.

Their clothes and most of their belongings also burned up in the blaze. Henderson's only request is for his sons. "One of them is in college and his clothes were in there. And my other son, his clothes were in there too. Like I said, my sons just really need some clothes at this time," said Henderson.

Henderson still has those sons though, and that's all that matters. "I ain't too happy but I'm satisfied that everything worked out like it did," said Henderson.

The fire department says the wind played a factor and most likely helped the fire spread. The Red Cross just got in touch with Henderson as I was leaving.

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