Family homeless after blaze
by Gary Kent
May 04, 2012 | 2080 views | 0 0 comments | 9 9 recommendations | email to a friend | print
Contributed photo
This was what firefighters found when they arrived at 707 N. Harrison St. Tuesday evening. A young family of three lost everything in the blaze.
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BEEVILLE — “My brother called me and said my house was on fire,” Jessica Garcia said Thursday afternoon.

“I thought he was joking. He does that all the time. I hung up on him. But he called me back.”

“Then my mom called me and then it was really serious,” Garcia continued.

When she got back to the “perfect” little rent house at 707 N. Harrison St. on Tuesday evening, the shock hit her full force. Nothing was left.

The clothes, the furniture, the kids’ toys, everything was gone. All Garcia and her 8-year-old twin children had were the clothes on their backs.

“I cried my eyes out,” she said. But today, it is impossible to cry any more. And the situation is serious.

There is no insurance to pay for what they lost.

The Red Cross had furnished Garcia and the kids with two nights stay at the Esquire Motel, but those two nights were up Thursday morning.

Finding affordable rental property in Beeville is impossible right now.

There are apartments out there but they are going for $1,000 or more a month. That is a far cry from the slightly more than $400 a month Garcia was paying her landlord, Mark Rincon, for their tidy little place. And that price is out of the family’s reach.

Garcia said friends and family have been helping all they can. The problem is that no one can offer the family shelter.

Her former boss, Lt. Dolores Rodriguez at the Bee County Jail, raised some cash. “That was the first place I called,” Garcia said.

Rodriguez told her to use the money for rent. But there was not enough money for that.

On Thursday evening she and the kids still had nowhere to go. “I’ve tried everywhere. I’ve called everybody that I could think of.”

Garcia said someone had suggested contacting a local church. She was considering that.

She does plan to be at the C.M. “Smitty” Smith Central Fire Station in the 100 block of West Cleveland Street on Sunday when the Beeville Volunteer Fire Department will be collecting clothing and food for the family.

“We’ve been offered furniture,” Garcia said. “But we don’t have any place to put it.”

The good thing is that no one was home when the fire broke out, probably the result of an electrical problem. Garcia and her twins, a girl and boy, were at her daughter’s baseball game.

Anyone who would like to donate to the family may do so between 11 a.m. and 1 p.m. Sunday during the drive at the fire station.

Garcia said her son wears a size 16 husky pants and a 14-16 shirt. Her daughter wears size 5-6 pants and a 7-8 shirt.

She wears size 14 pants and a large shirt.

Garcia said her father is planning another benefit to help get the family on their feet.

But what they want most of all is a place to stay, a roof over their heads and beds where they can rest their heads.

“That’s the one thing I’m needing,” Garcia said.

Hopefully she and the kids can find that soon.

Anyone who can offer assistance may reach Garcia by calling Fire Marshal James P. Barrie at 354-5789. He can get in touch with the family. Or they can reach the family Sunday morning at the fire station.

Gary Kent is a reporter at the Bee-Picayune and can be reached at 358-2550, ext. 120, or at
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