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Porters Falls Home Virtually Destroyed By Fire On Sunday

August 8, 2012
BY AMY WITSCHEY - Editor ( , Wetzel Chronicle

Fire ravaged a home in Porters Falls Sunday evening.

Reader Volunteer Fire Department Chief Kevin Hall said at about 5:30 p.m. his department received a call for a fully engulfed structure fire on State Road Run near Porters Falls. He immediately asked the dispatcher to seek mutual aid, which they had already initiated.

When Hall arrived at the home of Chuckie and Tracy Loy, he said there was a "neighborhood garden hose brigade" on the scene and "smoke was coming out anyplace smoke could come out of that house." The flames were confined to one bedroom and the blaze was out in about 15 minutes. However, Hall wouldn't declare it officially out for another 10 minutes, just to be sure there were no more flareups.

In addition to the three members of the RVFD, they were aided by seven or eight firefighters from the New Martinsville VFD, six from the Paden City VFC, and one from the Jacksonburg VFD. "The help was greatly appreciated by us," said Hall. That thanks extends to the "neighborhood garden hose brigade". "I'd hate to see what would have happened if they didn't have two little garden hoses on it already," he added.

The RVFD used about 3,000 gallons of water, confined to the one bedroom, and they finished up with foam to be sure the fire was squelched.

Hall said everything in that room, occupied by three girls, was a complete loss. That contents included their new school clothes. Smoke and steam damage extended throughout the home that also included three more bedrooms.

His best guess is there was about $35,000 in fixed property damage and roughly $40,000 of damage to the home's contents.

"They do not have insurance," said Hall who is working with the American Red Cross to get some relief for the family he says everyone in the Short Line area knows.

A couple businesses have helped the family out with a dump truck and manpower. Also, someone brought them a camper to live in beside the home until it is inhabitable again. The home does have limited power and water to aid in the clean-up effort. Hall said the Loys would welcome any help to that end.

Also, a list of their clothing and shoe sizes has been released. While Hall didn't know of a central gathering spot for the items, he said anyone in the Porters Falls area can help make the connection to the Loys or they could be dropped off to them at the Loy home.

Items needed are ladies size 10-12 pants, large shirts, size 8 1/2-9 shoe; size 14-16 girls shirts and pants, size 5 shoe; size 10-12 girls shirts and pants, size 4 shoe; men Size 32-32 pants, large shirts, size 8 1/2-9 shoe; ladies size 16 pants, XL shirts, size 8 1/2 shoe.

Ironically, Monday was Shortline native Chuckie Loy's first day to go back to work for a pipeline construction company.

Hall said the incident makes clear the ever-present need for volunteers. "We definitely are always looking for volunteers," he said. The department can be reached on Fridays at 304-386-4666.



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