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May 15, 2013

BelAm family loses everything in fire

A family of seven relocated back to the Belize from the United States just a few days ago to start a business and retire in Crooked Tree. But those dreams and plans literally went up in flames when their belongings and cash were completely destroyed by a mid-afternoon fire in the center of the village. All that is left tonight is the rubble of what was home for a few days. Duane Moody reports.


Duane Moody, Reporting

The life’s work of a Crooked Tree woman and her six children went up in flames sometime after two p.m. on Tuesday following an inferno that gutted the cement and wooden bungalow structure. Nora Wade went to visit her sister, Janice Gillett, when they got the distress call from a neighbor.


Janice Gillett, Sister of Fire Victim

Janice Gillett

“Lorette called we and tell we that there was a fire back there. So when we get back there, the whole place was under flame. The guys that were back there haul out some of the clothes. But when my sister, Daisy, get back there she get wah long stick and start to haul the clothes so the fire could not reach the couple piece of clothes dehn manage fi get out. We went there in the truck; he drive us to the area. And from the time we get by Miss Verna Adolphus area, we see the blaze behind there, I tell ahn Nora, everything is gone—don’t expect to find anything there beucase everything is gone. You coulda mi see the whole house frame out in the fire. We meet a big crowd there, but nothing saved.”


The sisters immediately headed towards the residence and from a distance they detected the thick black smoke. Their worst fears were confirmed.


Nora Wade, Fire Victim

“I was just praying that it was just a bushfire and we got there and around the corner, the whole house was already in flame. All I see my kids running and screaming. They came and said mom please don’t get mad with me because I did not mean to do it. I couldn’t say nothing because I feel like my feet was stuck to the ground. There is no way of telling somebody how you feel at that time because it wasn’t a good feeling. It’s still not a good feeling. If I keep talking to people I feel better. But if I sit by myself, I start crying.”


The fire started inside the kitchen when one of her sons left a pot on the stove unattended. Efforts to out the blaze were unsuccessful.


Nora Wade

Nora Wade

“He said mom, I was cooking and I was frying something on the stove and the other brother was there watching television and a visitor came by to ask if I was home and they told her no because she was looking to see if I could give her a job to start working with me. I guess he stood there and talked a little bit too long and when they got inside the kitchen… the frying pan, the oil, caught fire and the only thing he could think about was to put some water and that was the mistake. They said mom the fire was out on the kitchen and they didn’t realize it went up to the roof. They were trying to get the stuff out of the house, one of them was out. Some of his friends pulled him out.”


Duane Moody

“Any of them was injured?”


Nora Wade

“No they only got a little hurt on their arms.”


What is even more painful is that Nora had just moved back to Belize from the United States with her entire family on Saturday. Just four days home and plans to open a restaurant at the house went up in flames. She lost everything: clothes, stove, refrigerator and all household items…even cash stashed under a mattress went up in the blaze.


Nora Wade

“I just moved back from the U.S. coming to start a little restaurant and everything that I had. I just put all my kids’ clothes, everything away. I said guys we are home and this is what we are going to do. The home, everything; our passports, all documents were totally destroyed, money everything. We went through digging up after the fire and we just saw the little sign of the dollar bills was there. Everything, all clothes because I took out everything from their suitcases. Before I got here, I sent all my stuff ahead so that when I got here, I can start to do what I need to do. I said this weekend guys is Cashew Fest up in the village so I’m gonna see what we can do and get a booth and start working and I went and they said we didn’t have a booth. After they said somebody dropped out and we’ll give you the booth. And so I said okay guys and I sit and make my list and everything and even that list and all gone in that house.”


It was almost as the entire village ran to the family’s aid…something Wade says she is really grateful for.


Nora Wade

“It was like the whole village was behind me and supporting me, hugging me and sorry and I appreciate every last thing that they told me. I know it hurt, but I appreciate everything they done for me and everybody was trying to help.”


Duane Moody

“Moving forward…I know that it was your life’s work that went up in flames. Getting it back…how?”


Nora Wade

“I’m a fighter. I take care of my kids and I lost everything, but that’s not going to keep me down. I am gonna keep trying. Even though I am down, the little stuff that everybody donated to me I am going to take it and turn it around at the Cashew Fest. So you guys you know, come to the Cashew Fest, come to my stall; I’ll cook some food, sell you guys and see how I’m gonna turn back and put my stuff back together.”


The estimated lost is in the tune of one hundred and ten thousand dollars. Duane Moody for News Five.


If anyone would like to assist Wade and her family, monetary donations can be paid to Belize Bank account number 6-9-5-2-2-2-9-8-2-3-6. You can also contact the family at phone number: 651-1361. 

Viewers please note: This Internet newscast is a verbatim transcript of our evening television newscast. Where speakers use Kriol, we attempt to faithfully reproduce the quotes using a standard spelling system.

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1 Response for “BelAm family loses everything in fire”

  1. OriginalWoman says:

    Al I can say is wow!! This woman sounds amazing!! I know she will become prosperous again. So sorry for her loss but glad all the children are alive. Things will work out for this family.

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