Fire guts Collettsville-area home

Burning tar from ceiling wakes woman
Dec. 05, 2013 @ 08:20 AM

Anita Clark was half-asleep just before 2 a.m. when seeing sparks dropping from the ceiling brought her fully awake. The sight may have saved three lives.

What Clark, 38, saw falling was bits of roof tar burning from a fire above her. By the time she woke her boyfriend, 44-year-old Travis Enloe, asleep on sofa in the front of the house, flames were starting to fill a room in the middle of their house, at 3244 Deerbrook Road. Clark grabbed the couple's three Dalmations and escaped through a back door. Enloe grabbed his 12-year-old son, T.J., and headed out the front door.

Virgil Coeburn, who lives next door, heard the dogs outside barking and knew something was up. He looked out the window and saw flames shooting up from the back of the house.

The 62-year-old house, owned by Coeburn's wife, LeVonda Coeburn, was destroyed, said Deputy Fire Marshal Kevin Brown, who spent Wednesday morning sifting through the charred rubble looking for clues to what started the fire. The family was heating the house with a wood stove, but investigators did not think it caused the blaze.

Enloe thinks the fire started in a room between the kitchen and the back bedroom.

"There was nothing in that room that would have caused the fire, it's basically a walk-through," he said.

The family is staying at the Red Carpet Inn in Lenoir, thanks to the The Catawba Valley Chapter of the American Red Cross. Enloe, a carpenter, is now looking for another house.

"I lost everything inside the house, our clothes, it's all gone," he said.