After A Retirement Center Is Damaged By Fire, Workers Scramble To Find Temporary Placement

March 14, 2005 -- Posted at 8:45 p.m. CST

JONESBORO -- Pieces of the charred building are scattered throughout after a fire ripped through the inside of the Rosehaven Villa Retirement Center on Saturday night.

Administrators say the fire began in the laundry room.

Rachel Hay is the administrator at the Rosehaven Villa Residential Care Facility.

"The staff member that was on duty that night had come around the corner and had seen the smoke--she went on the longest end of the hallway and got everyone out. She ran around on the outside windows, and started beating on them and getting all of the residents out," said Hay.

Her heroic actions saved all twenty seven lives--in fact, no one even had to go to the hospital.

"She just did wonderful," said Hay.

Thankfully no lives were lost, but those residents were without a home.

They were taken to the Earl Bell Community Center Saturday night.

Finding temporary placement for the residents was top priority.

"Seven of them are at another retirement facility, 4 of them will stay at the Rosehaven Villa on Stone street, and 2 went home with families. Mid-South Health Systems have taken two as well," said Hay.

Hay says the generosity of others has made this tragedy a bit easier for the residents to handle.

"We've had churches donate, and several people have chipped in--it's just been wonderful," said Hay.

Hay says the facility will re-open, but says no exact date has been set.