Fire Destroys Jefferson Area Home - - Tyler, Longview, Jacksonville |ETX News


Fire Destroys Jefferson Area Home

It's been a sad start to the holiday season for one East Texas family, as they find themselves homeless after fire destroys their house.  It happened early Friday morning at their home in the 1500 Block of Watts Road, just west of Jefferson.

It was 3:00 a.m. Friday, when a fire in a Marion county home shatters what holiday spirit the Griffin family had.  Kathie Griffin and her two children and sister were all asleep when the front door was suddenly on fire, which was also the only way out.  They scrambled to escape through windows.

"That was the concern, getting everybody out and hoping that we were getting out because it was coming down fast," said Griffin.

"You couldn't see nothing because of the smoke and the only place you could see was the door that was on fire," said Griffin's 14 year old son Shawn.  

"I ran to the back window and picked up a two by four and busted it out that's when smoke started pouring out of it and the fire got worse," said Griffin's daughter Alexis.  Within minutes it was gone.  More disturbing the family feels someone set this fire.

"The fire was coming from around the door, coming from the outside in," said Griffin's sister Teresa Van Meter.  Their community has helped with food and clothing.  They lost everything, all their clothes, even the family car parked next to the home, but they have reason to be thankful.

"I'm just grateful to be alive," said Van Meter.  "I never knew what being alive meant."  Marion County officials are still investigating the origin of the fire.  An account for the Griffins has been set up at Citizens National Bank.

Bob Hallmark, Reporting.


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