Community responds after teacher's renovated home burns down

Teacher's Home Burns Down
(Source: KAIT)
(Source: KAIT)
(Source: KAIT)
(Source: KAIT)
(Source: KAIT)
(Source: KAIT)

PIGGOTT, AR (KAIT) - Jo Adams, a Piggott special education school teacher, stepped off the doorsteps of her newly renovated house Tuesday morning to go to work. Witnesses said 15 minutes later her home, that was almost paid off, burst into flames.

"They don't know a cause just yet but the way they were talking, if my kids and I were still in the house we would have died," said Adams.

The fire destroyed all of her valuables, including photos, her children's trophies, and other mementos.

"It makes me physically ill just to be out here to see that everything we have here is gone," said Adams.

Her dog Lucky also died in the fire.

"It is something that was very hard for us to get over," said Adams. "He was my best friend you know. He was with me in everything I did."

It was a loss her two daughters, Sophi Adams and Graci Patterson, both said was very painful to endure.

"When they got me out of my classroom that morning, the first thing I thought about was my dog," said Sophi.

Through their time of devastation, the community quickly jumped into action.

Within three hours of the fire, First Christian Church donated a house to the family.

"When I went to the fire, I saw the family was really having a hard time," said Alan Vaughn, the pastor. "It was heart wrenching. I just felt led to give the house to them, to be honest about the matter."

In addition to the house, the Piggott High School football team got together and delivered donated furniture to their new home from Jones Furniture.

The family also received food, clothing, jewelry, and money donations from different churches, classmates, and people throughout Clay County.

"It is just devastating when you hear something like that so as a community we pull together, and as a school district we look out for each other," said Barry Dehart, Piggott High School principal. "It is a small town, and it is a family."

"They sent me a check, and it said it is a result of the love and concern your students have for you and it just really touched my heart and meant a lot to me," said Adams.

Adams said she could not complain because she knows the fire could have killed her and her family which is why she is even more grateful for the love and support.

"We were just overwhelmed and humbled by their generosity," said Adams. "It was amazing, and we are just very proud of our community."

Adams added that because they have received so many different donations, she is going to give the donations they cannot use to local church closets.

Copyright 2016 KAIT. All rights reserved.

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