Family Loses Home In Fire - - Tyler, Longview, Jacksonville |ETX News

11/27/04-Chapel Hill

Family Loses Home In Fire

An East Texas family is without a home, following a fire that ripped through their house late Friday. The fire broke out around 11 p.m Friday, at a home off Gallion Circle, in the Chapel Hill area in Smith County.

Family members living in the home, said they were relying on faith to get them through.

"We built it from the ground up, we cut all the trees down, hauled in all the dirt... we just built it with our own hands," said homeowner Bobbie Gail Terry.

It's difficult for Bobbie Gail Terry to think about.  The home her family shared for 23 years, reduced to ashes in just hours.

"Things like that you don't think about happening to you, happening to other people but not you, everything is gone," Terry said.

As news of the fire got around Saturday, family members came to show their support.  Sorting through what was left they also searched for memories, some that will never be recovered.

"I remember learning how to drive nails into this house," said Bobbie Gail's son Jason O'neal.  "Looking at this house, watching my mom and dad knowing they lost everything, it"s hard"

Even items thought to be fire proof were not spared by the flames.  But one item, found in the middle of the ashes, was seemingly protected by this family's faith.

"This (wooden box) has part of my mothers rings in it that has past away and it was in the kitchen in one of the drawers and (the drawers) are no longer there," said Bobbie Gail.  "I told my sister-in-law 'We've got to find my rings they were in a box right here, here is where the cabinet was' we looked down and it was just sitting there right here like this and as you can see they weren't burned they were still in it.. out of everything in there this was sitting on top.. is god not good?"

Standing by a home that once was, this family prefers to see what will once again be.

"We've got a lot of friends and family, we'll make it, we'll be alright," said Terry.

The Terrys were not home when the fire started and there were no injuries.  The family does not have insurance.

If you would like to help you can make a donation to any Regions Bank location.  Tell them you would like to donate to the "Terry Fire Fund".

Chris Gibson, reporting

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