JONES COUNTY, MS. - The following is a press release from the Jones County Volunteer Fire Department.
An early morning house fire left a father and son homeless after fire and smoke consumed the structure. At 1:54 a.m., Sandersville, Rustin and Powers Volunteer Fire Departments responded to the scene of the fire at 619 East Main Street in Sandersville.
Upon arrival, firefighters advised heavy smoke showing, and quickly began an aggressive interior attack to contain the fire. Although the attack was successful in containing the fire to a back bedroom and part of the kitchen, the home sustained major smoke damage and water damage due to fighting the fire.
Additionally, the fire had made its way into the attic space, which presented a challenge for firefighters to locate and completely extinguish all hot-spots. Firefighters were on scene for over two hours ensuring the fire was completely out.
Two men, a father and son, occupied the home as renters. The father, Darren Harrison, stated that he was asleep on his recliner in the living room with his dog, Ace, in his lap. Mr. Harrison said that Ace suddenly woke up and jerked his head around, staring in the direction of the fire. Initially, Mr. Harrison thought someone was trying to break into his home. He went to his son's room to alert him to the possible intrusion when his son said that he smelled smoke. It was at that time they realized the home was on fire.
Mr. Harrison and his son grabbed Ace, guns and some belongings and made their way outside to put the dog and items in their truck. They then attempted to reenter the home but stated that it was far too hot and called 911. Mr. Harrison credited his dog with saving both his life and his son's life, otherwise the outcome could have been much more tragic.
Upon Mr. Harrison's request, Red Cross was called to assist he and his son, and firefighters performed salvage to locate and retrieve guns that belonged to Mr. Harrison's grandfather. All of Mr. Harrison's and his son's belongings were either destroyed by the fire or heavily damaged by smoke and rendered useless. The home is considered unlivable at this time.
Mr Harrison also agreed to receive donations. For anyone interested in assisting this family, please contact Darren Harrison at 601-577-6651. Clothes and general necessities are urgently needed.
Although the cause of the fire is unknown, Mr. Harrison stated that he saw the breaker box flashing and believed it may have been electrical in nature. The father and son stated that they do have some type of renter's insurance but it is very little and they are unsure of what it will cover or replace.
Emergency personnel on scene included Sandersville, Rustin and Powers Volunteer Fire Departments, EMServ Ambulance Service, Sandersville Police Department and Jones County Fire Public Information Officer Caleb Worrell.
Fire apparatus on scene included Sandersville Engine and Tanker, Rustin Engine and Tanker and Powers Tanker, Command 1 and Rescue 3.