Fayetteville, NC, August 9, 2021 – In the early morning hours of Saturday, August 7, 2021, residents of a Fayetteville apartment complex were suddenly awakened by the sound of smoke alarms and fellow neighbors pounding on doors, yelling “Fire, Get Out!” Dazed and confused, residents quickly saw smoke and their building on fire.
One woman described a frantic scramble to get out after her barking dog alerted her to the fire. “I grabbed what I could that was right near the front door, I grabbed him, and we got out,” she said.
Within minutes, the apartment complex was bursting into flames. Fortunately, every resident and their pets made it out safely, with only one injury. Disaster-trained volunteers with the American Red Cross of Eastern North Carolina were on site before the flames were fully extinguished. As the Fayetteville Fire Department and Gray’s Creek Fire Department focused on putting out the fire, Red Cross volunteers focused on meeting the needs of the people who were suddenly displaced from their homes.
“When the Red Cross was called our local volunteers quickly mobilized to support the first responders and impacted families”, said Phil Harris, Executive Director of the American Red Cross Sandhills Chapter. “Many of the families did not know where to turn and Red Cross volunteers gave them help and hope to start them on their road to recovery,” he added.
The Red Cross and our partners provided more than 650 meals and snacks to families and firefighters. Volunteers also assisted virtually to help facilitate recovery support.
The Red Cross will continue helping families with direct financial assistance and recovery resources now that the fire is out.
In total, 22 households were damaged in the building on Ivanhoe Court.
The response is one of 24 disasters volunteers responded to in the week ending August 8. Volunteers helped a total of 111 people from 50 different households.
The Red Cross responds to more than 60,000 disasters across the country every year and most of these are home fires. In a typical year, home fires kill more people in the United States than all other natural disasters combined.
HOW TO HELP Help people affected by disasters and countless other crises by making a gift to American Red Cross Disaster Relief. Your gift enables the Red Cross to prepare for, respond to and help people recover from disasters big and small. People can donate by visiting redcross.org, calling 1-800-RED-CROSS, or texting the word REDCROSS to 90999 to make a $10 donation.
BECOME A VOLUNTEER To join us, visit redcross.org today to learn more about volunteer opportunities and how to submit a volunteer application.
About the American Red Cross
The American Red Cross shelters, feeds and provides emotional support to victims of disasters; supplies nearly half of the nation’s blood; teaches lifesaving skills; provides international humanitarian aid; and supports military members and their families. The Red Cross is a charitable organization – not a government agency – and depends on volunteers and the generosity of the American public to perform its mission. For more information, please visit redcross.org/enc or @RedCrossENC.