Family loses home to fire
A Spanish Town family is homeless and could be for a long time if help doesn't come their way soon, after fire destroyed their dwelling on Tuesday.
Pauline McKay, 68, who shared a six-bedroom board house in Ellerslie Pen with six adults and eight children, three of whom are her grandchildren, said she is in a bind. McKay told THE STAR that she was at the Spanish Town Market when she got a call that her house was on fire.
"I had left my three- and six-year-old grandchildren outside, so I was more concerned about them. As I reached the house, I saw that everything was gone, and nothing was saved," she disclosed. McKay said that after she saw that her grandchildren were safe, she turned her focus to what was left of her house, furniture, appliances, clothing, and personal belongings.
"The children them can't go to school because them nuh have no clothes or book. Right now mi give God the glory that no life nuh lost," she said. One of her neighbours, Anthony Allen, remains in hospital in stable condition after suffering multiple burns when he got tangled in an electric line that was severed from the pole because of the fire.
McKay said that while she was praying last month, she sensed that something was going to happen.
"I don't know what was coming my way, but I asked God to give me the strength to go through it and carry me to the other side," she said. For the time being, family members have been separated, with everyone staying at different places.
"I have no way out, I have to depend on the mercy of God. I do Sunday school right here with 30 children, and now if I can't get some form of help, these children will be scattered," she stated. "Right now, I need some Bibles because everyone of mi Bible burn up in the fire. I also need a place to carry on with Sunday school, because the Word of God is important for these children."
McKay said she was not sure how the fire started, adding that she has no resources to rely on and would welcome any help she can get.
One unit from the Spanish Town Fire Brigade put out the blaze, but not before some neighbouring houses were affected by the fire. A spokesman at the Spanish Town Fire Department said the origin of the fire is still not clear. The damage is estimated to be in the millions of dollars.