Sherman apartment tenants pick up the pieces after fire

By: Nicole Holt Email
By: Nicole Holt Email

SHERMAN, Tex – After a two alarm fire destroyed at least 12 apartments Monday night, officials are left with the cleanup process, the investigation, and finding new homes for dozens of tenants.

Fire Chief J.J. Jones says Sherman fire officials have narrowed the cause down to a grease fire that started in the kitchen of one of the units, and while the fire was accidental, the tenant who lived in that apartment is no where to be found.

It began just before seven o’clock Monday night as flames shot into the air and tenants watched concerned for their homes.

"Our first efforts were to make sure everyone was out of this building. There were 19 units in this one building, a total of 59 in the complex. When all three were evacuated, crews began to contain and extinguish the fire," Jones said.

The scene Tuesday morning is one of destruction and despair- charred floors, cabinets and what's left of someone’s home.

"As you can see the fire destroyed much of the center building. We have four units that were completely destroyed, eight that sustained heavy damage,"

Jones says the two alarm fire forced residents out of the buildings. Electricity was cut off and Tuesday morning, the center building remains without power.

Those who lived here say they're just thankful to be alive.

""I wasn't sure if it was going to get in my apartment, if I was going to lose everything I own. I just moved into these apartments four months ago and I’m on TCOG so it’s just really nerve-racking," one apartment tenant said.

While many that are under TCOG assistance will be able to move into a new apartment complex, others are left without homes depending on the Red Cross for help.

"I’m just praying and hoping. I’m on TCOG, so I’m hoping that will help. I don't know what to do yet," that tenant said.

Sherman Red Cross says a shelter has been opened for those affected by Monday night’s fire. If you need assistance, St. Anne’s Place, located at 720 South Travis in Sherman, is now open.

As far as the tenant who started the fire, he was last seen leaving the complex right before the flames got out of hand. We’re told no charges will be filed since it was accidental.


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Comments are posted from viewers like you and do not always reflect the views of this station.
  • by taylor Location: sherman on Feb 20, 2008 at 01:03 PM
    Im just glad that everyone got out of the fire and that everyonne is okay,also im just really sad because it had just happend in the night.
  • by Taylor Location: Sherman on Feb 20, 2008 at 01:00 PM
    i just wanted to say that im glad that everyone is alright because one of my friend lved in Southgate apartmens,im also glad beecause everybody got o;ut of the fire.
  • by Meagan on Feb 20, 2008 at 11:00 AM
    Which apartments were they? The story didn't say.
  • by Josh Location: Denison on Feb 20, 2008 at 09:49 AM
    When does the time come people are held accountable for the "accidental fire". I understand several families were effected by this fire that were beyond there control but the individual that caused this fire should be held responsible. Many countries have laws in place that make it a crime if you cause a fire. Many of these accidental fires are preventable if you use some commomn sense. Some of these effected families lost everthing and do not have insurance. Until it becomes socially unacceptable to cause such a fire, stories like this will continue. We are all reponsible for our actions.
  • by here Location: gone on Feb 20, 2008 at 08:59 AM
    TO ASHLEY HOW DARE YOU PUT PEOPLE DOWN HOW DO WE KNOW YOUR NOT ONE OF THOSE PEOPLE BUT YOU LIVE IN FREAKIN OKLAHOMA SO WHY ARE YOU CONCERNED OF WHO IS GOING TO GET TAKEN CARE OF AND WHO ISNT AND WHAT COLOR THESE PEOPLE ARE OR RACE PEOPLE LIKE YOU MAKE ME SICK AND YOU HAVE NO RIGHT TO COMMENT THE WAY YOU DID SHAME ON YOU!!!!! AND YOU HAVE NO RIGHT TO EVEN COMMENT ON WELFARE SOME PEOPLE NEED IT AND SOME DON'T YOU ARE MEAN PERSON AND YOU NEED NOT TO COMMENT ON TEXAS NEWS
  • by bub Location: Shertown on Feb 20, 2008 at 06:35 AM
    My gosh, what ugly comments...yay for the teacher commenting. Those poor kids. They are lucky to have the teachers and the principle supporting them. And to anonymous, I'm a church going christian, we are not all stupid and insensitive. Alot of us care very deeply about our fellow man, no matter what color their skin or nationality. There are prob some here illegally,but it's the children who are most vulnerable.
  • by Richard Location: Sherman on Feb 20, 2008 at 04:50 AM
    Another successful Community Revitalization Program.
  • by Anonymous Location: sherman on Feb 19, 2008 at 07:49 PM
    I agree, how do we know that it was accidental? BUT, just because they are living on welfare doesn't mean they are bad people. I bet your one of sherman's finest... A typical church going christian. Maybe you should learn proper grammer before you start critising other people. You sound very prejudice. White people huh? Maybe ur on welfare and just a little jealous of your situation. Eaither way, innocent people lost there homes and belongings over one stupid person. Probably alot of innocent children who have no control over what race they are. Maybe you should go back to whatever prejudice country you are from. Maybe you should start "hollowing" as you said about something else.LOL. AS the article states they were glad they didnt die in the fire. PEOPLE LIKE YOU SUCK. It's people like you that make me hate this town. I believe there are too many immigrants also, but when it comes to someone loosing there home and everything else that just takes precedence over anything else.
  • by teacher Location: sherman on Feb 19, 2008 at 07:28 PM
    To Ashley - I really don't appreciate your comments. I teach many of these children whose homes were destroyed. I understand it is frustrating to have illegal immigrants in our country, but your crass comments are completely inappropriate. You need to remember there were children effected by this - kids who lost everything they had - which isn't much. I had a sweet thing back at school today worried about not having her homework because it was burnt up in the fire. If you can still write those ugly things after hearing this, then maybe you need to "go go" to Mexico.
  • by clm Location: Sherman on Feb 19, 2008 at 06:49 PM
    It would have been nice if you had included the location of the apartments.
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