December 28, 2016 Edition

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Fire destroys home
the day after Christmas

Gretchen Hunt
Editor

Losing one's home is a tragedy no matter what, but for Dennis and Belinda Maple of the Coffman community it was magnified when their home was destroyed by fire the day after Christmas.

Dennis had left early Monday morning to go hunting. A short while later Belinda heard a crackling sound and realized the front of their home was on fire.

"I think it must have started on the front porch," Belinda said. "I heard crackling and saw fire rushing by the front door."

Dennis said there were some electrical outlets on the front porch that could have been the source of the fire.

Belinda said she and their daughter, Bryana, 14, were able to escape through a bedroom window and call 911, as well as Dennis to let him know what was happening.

The Maples also have two grown daughters, Jessica and Alyssa, who no longer live in the home.

"We are all alive, so we are thankful," Dennis said. "Our dogs made it out OK too."

But while they are thankful that only material possessions were lost, they find themselves in desperate need as they had no homeowners insurance. Currently staying with a sister-in-law, Sheila Maple, they are in need of clothing and several other items.

"We have plenty of furniture given, but they are in need of appliances, household items like dishes, pots and pans, towels, etc.," Sheila said. "We are trying to meet their needs so anything would be appreciated."

Dennis wears size 34-30 pants, size large shirts and size 9.5 shoes; Belinda wears size 11/12 pants, size medium/large shirts and size 8.5 to 9 shoes; and Bryana wears size 0 jeans, size small shirts and size 5 to 6 shoes.

Dennis describes the experience of losing one's home as "overwhelming," saying just trying to get the basics like medications and clothing is the priority.

A Go Fund Me account has been set up for the family under the name of Maple Family for those who would like to help the family in this time of need.

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