Denison artist loses everything in fire

DENISON, Texas (KXII) -- Avery Jo said she was working on a mother's day gift for her sister when they smelled burning plastic. Her dad opened her bedroom door and found an inferno.

"He started screaming right away call 911,” Jo said. “So I immediately grabbed the baby and ran outside and called 911."

The fire started on North 8th Avenue in Denison around 10:30 Sunday night.

When the smoke cleared, Jo says, everything she owned was destroyed.

"And it's hard looking around here now,” Jo said. “Seeing that all my sketchbooks and everything. They're all gone."

They think the fire started in the attic, possibly electrical.

Jo said more than 300 books were lost, but even worse, all of her art supplies. Before art, she studied political science.

"I got sick. I got epilepsy. And I had to drop out of college. And it was very hard,” Jo said.

But a love for art helped her though it. And continues to help her, as a form of therapy.

"It became the most important thing in my life. And it became what I wanted to do with my life,” Jo said.

But community members have already started a drive to replace them, as well as Jo's clothes, shoes and whatever else she needs.

"I'm devastated that all my mementos and memories are gone,” Jo said. “But I'll get over it.”

Art supplies destroyed include:

Colored pencils
Acrylic sketchbooks
Acrylic paint
Chalk pastels
Oil pastels

Jo wears size 16 in pants, 2x in shirts and size 10 shoes.

Her camera and cell phone were also destroyed.

To drop off donations call Tresa Gail Curtis at 903-415-0567.

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