8News Viewers Assist Families Displaced in Fire

RICHMOND (WRIC)—Just one day before Thanksgiving, two families—including one with special needs—are trying to get back on their feet after a fire destroyed everything they owned.

On Friday, 8News Senior Reporter Nate Eaton covered the devastating fire that hit Colonial Ridge Apartments in Chesterfield. The scene involved flames and smoke everywhere; people ran from the inferno into the cold, with no shoes or clothing.

As soon as the story about Tishawn Bobb and her two sons aired, the 8News newsroom received countless phone calls from viewers who were desperate to help, including Anne West.

8News Anchor Ava-joye Burnett decided to connect this viewer with the displaced family over the phone.

West says she's going to pack up all of the extra things she has and donate them to the Bobb family. She, along with a group she's part of, is also going to write Bobb and her sons a check.

“I have lots of things that I would like to give you to help you get another start, a fresh start, or to help you get restarted,” West told them.

“It's kind of overwhelming,” Bobb said. “It's really a good feeling to know that there's somebody out there that's willing to help us.”

There is also another family still in need of assistance—Marcell Waters, his fiancé and their three young children. Their new apartment is bare.

The Greater Richmond Chapter of the American Red Cross, churches and even a barber shop have all stepped in to help. The one thing that Waters and his fiancé desperately need is a television, because they are hearing impaired. One of the only ways in which they can communicate with the outside world is through a video system that's set up through the television.

“The TV's a big thing because with the video cam, it helps them communicate with others,” said Charron Brown, Waters' stepmother. “Not just their friends, but also on the outside for communication purposes, for business purposes. So, it's like their interpreter for them at times.”

If you would like to help either of these two families get back on their feet, contact the Greater Richmond Chapter of the American Red Cross at 804-780-2250 and tell them you want to assist the Marcell Waters family or the Tishawn Brown family.


Copyright 2013 by Young Broadcasting of Richmond

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