Home destroyed in fire hours after Mom buys Christmas presents for 5 kids

DORCHESTER — Six adults and six children are now homeless after a car fire spread to an apartment building in Dorchester.

After one or two more nights at a hotel, the families say the money they got from the Red Cross will run out and they can’t go back home.

“It was boom, boom, boom at least 4-5 booms,” said Elissa Harrington who was displaced from the fire.

“I just heard a loud sound like somebody threw something and we heard glass breaking and we came out and the car was on fire and it went from the car to the house and then stuff just started popping,” said Felisha Colon who lived next door.

The fire started around 8:30 on Geneva Ave Saturday night injuring 2 firefighters and forcing 12 people to run out from the 2nd and 3rd floors.

“They said go get a bucket of water to throw on the car and I look out the window and the flames are already up the front of the house,” said Eric Harrington who was just starting a moped business and lost everything both outside and inside. “The flames went above so they had to break into the all the roof even into my room they were spraying water everywhere, on my bed and my TV, my game system, you name it. I had important documents. I have pictures of people I have lost that I cannot get back.”

Also not coming back, the children’s Christmas presents, purchased just hours earlier.

“This was the first year I had done my shopping early,” said Elissa Harrington as her 8-month old baby began crying in her arms.

If there’s one reason not to cry, it’s because everyone got out safe, but still, there will be lasting impacts.

“I got injuries from smoke inhalation, even last night I was coughing throughout my sleep,” said Eric Harrington. “I suffer from PTSD and this is the moment that really triggered me.”

The reason for the fire remains under investigation.

“I really don’t know,” said Elissa Harrington. “There were kids out here smoking. I let the firefighters know and they said they would do an investigation. My landlord is not trying to help me. They just say call the Red Cross. I don’t even know what I’m gonna do after tomorrow.”

She says she got $845 from the Red Cross, but without renters insurance, that money won’t put a dent in their needs right now. Click here if you’d like to help, https://www.gofundme.com/f/help-melissas-family-during-time-of-need?utm_campaign=p_cf+share-flow-1&utm_medium=copy_link&utm_source=customer