Eclectic Family Loses Everything In Fire, Needs Help


By Catalina Trivino

From Elmore County-- a family is left with nothing after their house is engulfed in flames -- and while they don't know the exact cause of the fire, fire marshalls are using an arson dog to investigate.

Fire Marshals tell us the dog was there to help find where and how the fire started because they're saying arson is not being ruled out of this fire -- one that's left a family in Eclectic without a home.

An arson dog sniffs the scene of what used to be Vanessa Freeman's home, which is now left in ruins after flames as high as 30 feet engulffed it. And it's left nothing salvagable -- everything from clothes to furniture -- now turned into ash.

She says she woke up in the middle of the night and noticed smoke on her floor...

"I heard a loud noise and I got up and saw smoke on the floor. And I go through the whole house [and] there's no fire inside the house. And something says, 'Vanessa, go outside!'" Said Freeman.

When she got out, she says she saw the back of her house in flames and woke up her son, her friends and their children, who were also staying the night.

Eclectic Police Chief, Robert Head, says the house is a total loss, but he's just glad no one was hurt.

"You lose everything. They lose memories, being the holidays, you know, it's tough, but the main thing is no one lost a life. You can replace things, but a life, you cannot," Said Head.

And while the cause of the fire is still undetermined, fire marshalls still collected forensic evidence.

Freeman says she hopes arson was not the cause, but she wonders what would have happened if she didn't wake up.

"And I try my best to block it out because it's something I do not want to imagine because we could've all burned up in the house and nobody would've known," Said Freeman.

Fire marshalls are interviewing neighbors in hope of getting leads about what exactly happened. Alabama News Network will bring you more information once the investigation is complete.

Freeman tells us they did not have insurance and they were left with nothing except the clothes on their backs.

If you'd like to help, you're asked to donate clothes or furniture to the family, which can be taken to the Eclectic Police Department at 145 Main St. Eclectic, AL 36024.

The following our sizes if you'd like to donate:

12 year old girl: Pants size: 8-9; Shirts/Jackets: Medium; Shoe Size: 8-9.

10 year old boy: Pants size: 12; Shirts/Jackets: Adult Small; Shoe Size: 8.

Any adult female or male clothing will also be collected.

Add a comment


Comment: 1000 Characters Left

WNCF and its affiliated companies are not responsible for the content of comments posted or for anything arising out of use of the above comments or other interaction among the users. Comments are posted on site immediately and without station moderation. If you feel a comment is inappropriate you may flag it for review. For guidelines on flagging comments see our Terms & Conditions. We reserve the right to screen, refuse to post, remove or edit user-generated content at any time and for any or no reason in our absolute and sole discretion without prior notice, although we have no duty to do so or to monitor any Public Forum.