Grandmother of 5 Devastated by House Fire

Tuesday, November 18th 2008, 6:24 pm
By: News 9

By Melissa Maynarich, NEWS 9

MUSTANG, Okla. -- A family in Mustang has been left with only ashes in the place their home once stood.

The family believes it was an electrical fire that started behind the washing machine, where an outlet had recently been giving the family some trouble.

Until you've had your own home burn to the ground, the Watson family said, you don't even know what's inside that's most important.

Callie Watson stepped out of the house around dinnertime two Sundays ago with her three grandchildren she's raising, and her two foster kids. But then she got a call to return home.

"The house was on fire, and the roof had just fallen in when we drove up. And there were a lot of people here, and a lot of fire trucks," 14-year-old Forrest Watson said.

The 2800 square foot house, with four bedrooms and three baths, had been the Watson family home for 25 years.

"I've worked all my life since I was 13 years old, and this is my life. This is my life and my kids' life, and every other kid that's every wanted a home's life. It's just gone. And I can't start over. I'm too old to start over," Callie Watson said.

Callie Watson has used this home not only for herself, but also to raise dozens of foster kids over the years. The kids are known throughout their community, whether it be from their soccer league, or with the school band, but now even their instruments are gone.

"I mean, these kids are going to need something. Need a home to grow up in. And as long as they have something that looks like this, you can't grow up in that. You know, they have nothing," Steve Gibson, the kids' soccer coach said.

Although it was only a house, and all the people who lived inside are safe, the Watson's still feel lost.

"I loved this house. This is the house I was going to die in. This was the house I was going to leave my children, my grandchildren that I've adopted," Callie Watson said.

The Red Cross is working on giving the family hotel vouchers for three nights. Right now, they're staying with friends. But future housing plans at this moment are very temporary. The family did not have insurance.

A fund has been set up in the Watson family name at the All America Bank on Highway 152 in Mustang. If you'd like to donate money to the family, call 376-2265.