Monterey house destroyed in fire

Published 12:04 am Friday, February 20, 2015

MONTEREY — Christina Rollins watched Wednesday as all of her family’s possessions went up in flames during a house fire in Monterey.

Rollins, a Vidalia native who has lived in Monterey for a year, was on her way back to her house Wednesday afternoon when she got a call from her 14-year-old son, Anthony, saying that he heard some popping sounds coming from the kitchen.

“He called me and said, ‘The kitchen is all black,’ and I told him to get out as quick as he could,” Rollins said. “My son ran out of the house just in time before everything caught on fire. Thankfully, he was fine, just a little shook up.”

Email newsletter signup

Rollins arrived at her house moments later with her husband, Robert, to find Monterey Fire Department officials fighting what they called an “uncontrollable” blaze.

“They told us that by the time they got there, the fire was out of hand,” Rollins said. “There was nothing we could do.”

Apart from the material possessions the family lost in the blaze, Rollins said she was struggling the most with the loss of the family’s Chihuahua, Coco, who was trapped inside the house when the fire started.

“She was like another child to me,” Rollins said through tears. “That’s not something we can get back.”

Rollins said fire department officials told her they wouldn’t know the exact cause of the fire for a few days, but suspected it started in the kitchen based on the details available at the time.

Concordia Fire District No. 2 Chief Nolen Cothren said his crews assisted MFD in fighting the blaze by delivering a tank of water to the house.

“By the time we got there, it was on the ground,” Cothren said. “It was a complete loss.”

Rollins said she was renting the house and did not have renter’s insurance to cover any of the items lost.

She said community members were in the process of helping her with some donations.

“At this point we need clothes, shoes, anything we can really get,” Rollins said. “We don’t have anything.”

Rollins said she and her family will stay with her sister in Monterey until they can find a new house to rent.

Donations can be dropped off at 4555 Louisiana 565 Jonesville in the Lismore area.