Macedonia community comes together to help family who lost house, pets in fire

Published: Mar. 14, 2022 at 9:44 PM CDT
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MACEDONIA Ala. (WAFF) - The Macedonia community and volunteer firefighters are coming together to help a family who lost everything in a house fire, including their home, pets, and clothes.

“God’s good. When I went up to get the kids, all I could think of was God let them live; I don’t care about myself,” said James Priest.

James and Sonya Priest moved from Georgia last September and moved into a home on County Road 49 in Macedonia.

On February 4, their home caught on fire. They lost everything, including their two cats and two dogs.

Macedonia, Fyffe, Dutton, and Powell Volunteer Fire Departments all assisted.

“I jumped up, and I started putting on a pair of pants and shirt over my gown, and it was dark, and I grabbed the first pair of shoes I could find,” said Sonya Priest.

She said she and her daughter were able to make it outside, while her husband and two sons were trapped upstairs and had to jump out of the window.

They suffered burns and smoke inhalation. James was taken to Vanderbilt, where he was treated for a broken back. Now the community is lending a helping hand.

“People I didn’t even know reached out and texted me, and the day after the fire, the schools had reached out to us and started collecting donations and clothes for the kids,” said Priest.

The Macedonia Volunteer Department held a fundraiser on March 12 and collected close to $6,000to donate to the family.

“It has brought our department a lot closer. It has brought the community out to see what we do, and it’s amazing the care my guys have done, the women’s auxiliary that we started, and our firefighters. It’s something for a group that volunteers,” said Macedonia Fire Chief Jimmy Jones.

Right now, the cause of the fire is unknown.

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