News 12 FIRST at FIVE
December 17, 2007
AIKEN, S.C. - Lee and Karen Thigpen hold hands as they look at their home in disbelief.
"We lost half the house pretty much," says Karen who had just left for work when the fire started.
It happened on Shady Lane off of Vaclouse Road in Aiken. The flames began in the fireplace and spread to the attic. Looking at the outside of the home, one wouldn't would think there was only minor damage. But, the inside of the home is nearly gutted. Burned and charred material from inside the home lay on the ground, including pieces of the walls and ceiling -- a single sneaker left on the front porch.
"Luckily enough--our neighbor was on his way to work. He noticed our ceiling was on fire and he went and banged on the door...Told my mother-in-law the house was on fire and she grabbed the baby and got out," explained Karen.
The Thigpens'' one year old son and his grandmother were inside with the fire started--both made it out safely.
Lee Thigpen works third shift and was only 10 minutes from home when he got the disturbing call,
"They said....'Your house is on fire....I was like, what?'," said Lee.
"We're just thankful for the people who are trying to help us. The only place we have to go from here is to start over," added Karen.
As they start over and work on rebuilding the house, they're main concern is their one-year old son. His room is located on the same side as the fireplace and all his clothes and toys--gone.
"We just want to make sure he has his clothes and his toys. He lost everything and he's more important to us," said Karen, "He's our little munchkin and we'd like to make sure he's as he always has been."
If you'd like to help, send items to 457 Wrights Mill Road, Aiken, S.C. 29801. (Clothing sizes are as follows: Diapers, Size 6; Clothes, Size 3T; Shoes, Size 9)