Fire destroys Upshur County home

By Taylor Hemness - bio | email

Tim Swisher says he was getting ready for work early Monday morning, when the lights in the house started to flicker.

"I came downstairs, saw fire in the electrical room where the washer and dryer is," Swisher said. "So I got my dad, he came in there, we got water from the pool, and put it out."

At that point, Tim thought the danger was over. But the second he went back upstairs, he knew that there was a much bigger problem.

"Smoke was coming up, so I knew it was in the walls," Swisher said. "So I got my sister up, and me and dad were still trying to put it out, we finally got everybody out of the house, and tried to save everything we could."

The fire eventually reached the attic, and it took a lot of hands to fight it.

"I've got six different fire departments out here," said Upshur County Fire Marshal Paul Steelman. "We brought in a lot of equipment and personnel. Fire was in the attic, and that hampered the interior fire attack teams because they had a lot of fire above them that had to be brought under control first."

The cause is still undetermined, but investigators think the fact that the lights were flickering before the fire started is a strong indicator of what happened. Either way, the Swisher family has lost a home that represented a lot of hard work.

"It was built in the 1930s in Longview, and it was moved out here in the 1980s, and my father rebuilt it, with his own hands," said Randy Swisher.

No one was injured in the fire. The Swisher family was able to get some of their belongings out of the house, but the house itself is a total loss. The family does have insurance.

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