Tim Ingram says he and his five young children were having a typical Sunday afternoon — one they didn’t expect to end with devastation.
“Sittin’ right over there yesterday, before we went to the pizza place, I was sittin’ there drinking some water and nothin’ was out of the ordinary everything was just like a normal day,” Ingram tells News 3’s Mikhaela Singleton.
He says he and his children had been playing in the yard before getting in the car to get dinner. Neighbors say less than 30 minutes later, they were drawn outside by the smell of what they thought was a barbeque. Instead, they say they found themselves rushing to Ingram’s trailer — completely engulfed in flames — unsure whether or not the family was still inside.
“I mean they got the door down and saw they wasn’t in there. My brother actually, goin’ over to the window, cut his hand. We’re just glad they wasn’t at home,” says neighbor William Hardy.
“I mean the lady across from us called and said to me, ‘Tim your trailer’s on fire.’ I didn’t know what to think, I dropped the phone,” Ingram says. “We got to seein’ it and, oh I just didn’t know, and my little boy got to crying and I just… I didn’t know what to do.”
Family photos, keepsakes, and memories — up in smoke in a matter of minutes. Ingram says he, his friends and family haven’t been able to save much from the wreckage of what authorities speculate was an electrical fire.
The Red Cross in a matter of hours stepped in to provide money for food, clothes and shelter while the Ingrams get back on their feet.
“Our mission statement is to basically help people who are in need — immediate need,” says Jay Wortley, the East Alabama Red Cross Volunteer Coordinator. “My goal is to help someone who needs my help and to use my training that allows them to recover and move on with their life.”
The Ingrams have since compiled a list of needed clothing items for Tim and his school-age children:
- 59 year old male: 34/28 or medium pant, XL shirt
- 16 year old male: 14 to 16 youth or adult small pant, 14 to 16 shirt
- 10 year old male: 10 or medium youth pant, 8 to 10 shirt
- 9 year old male: 8 or small youth pant, 8 shirt
- 7 year old male: 8 or small youth pant, 8 shirt
- 4 year old female: 5T or 6T pant and shirt
The family adds they are in need of grocery and gas gas cards. Call Vallie Ingram at 706-518-4245 for a location to drop off donated items. The family is also accepting monetary donations via GoFundMe.