Neighbors come to family's aid after fire damages home

Published: Apr. 7, 2018 at 3:10 PM CDT
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Authorities are looking for the cause of a Saturday afternoon house fire that extensively damaged a home in northwest Omaha.

The fire was reported around 2 p.m. in a home in the 6200 block of North 108th Avenue Circle.

The first crew on the scene reported heavy smoke and flames on approach.

Omaha Fire Battalion Chief Bob McDonnell said, "As soon as we pulled out of the station we saw heavy smoke."

The fire moved quickly and McDonnell said, "There's quite a bit of fire damage to the structure."

The fire was called under control at 2:39 p.m.

While fire crews tended to the aftermath of the damaged property, neighbors tended to the immediate needs of the family, showing up with clothing and other items.

"We knew the need was there," Sharon Doolittle said. "I was saving it all for a garage sale but this is the best garage sale I ever had in my life."

Korri Doolittle said, "I wanted to help because I like helping people. And you're supposed to be kind."

Shayla said, "Yeah, I mean, they just kind of lost everything before their eyes so, you know, if you have a chance to help people, why wouldn't you?"

McDonnell said, "That's the way Omaha is. When people are down and they need help, uh, people step up and do whatever they can for them."

The donated items will come in handy. Fire officials say no one will be living in the home for a while.

While the cause has yet to be determined, investigators say the blaze appears to have been accidental.