Fire Displaces Families, Team Lee Responds

Staff Sgt. Robert Moore now has a renewed sense of what it means to be a member of the Army Family. After a fire nearly consumed his home May 21 in Jackson Circle, everyone from his squad leader to the garrison commander was involved in making his displaced Family received the utmost care.

“I stayed with some friends from my unit (Warrior Transition Unit) that night, but then they found housing for my Family at Monroe Manor,” Moore said. “They took care of us like you wouldn’t believe. They get high marks from me.”

Moore and another Soldier from the 108th Quartermaster Company, 530th Combat Sustainment Support Battalion, 49th QM Group, escaped from their blazing duplex home uninjured May 21.

Moore said he was working out upstairs that evening when somebody began beating on his door to tell him the back of his neighbor’s house was on fire. Moore was alone and exited the property to alert his neighbor.

“The rear of the structure was engulfed in flames,” said Station Chief Dion Pendergast, Fort Lee Fire and Emergency Services. “It started to come around to the side (of the next door quarters).”

Neighboring residents were evacuated but returned to their homes after the fire was under control, Pendergast said.

Assessment of the structural damage and cause of the fire is currently under investigation.

Moore said he was glad he had purchased an additional renter’s insurance policy but he regrets not having a firebox to protect his documents and a backup of his Family’s digital photos.

John Corriher, Pinnacle investment manager, arrived at the site of the fire that night to provide assistance with the two displaced Families. They provided $200 gift cards for personal items. They also found new homes for them on post, rental furniture, and a housewares package.

Part of the Soldier’s rental fees pays for renter’s insurance. Corriher said Pinnacle is coordinating with the residents to make sure their insurance claims are completed.

Pinnacle’s accommodations was in fulfillment of an “unwritten policy to take care of our residents in a time of need and this definitely warranted a need,” Corriher said.

Corriher also provided snacks and refreshment to the military police and firefighters on site to show his appreciation for their hard work late at night.

Pinnacle has set up an account at the Fort Lee Credit Union under the name of The Villages at Fort Lee for donations to the Families until June 2.

Non-perishable foods are also being accepted at the Welcome Center, 1510 Sisisky Blvd., or the Jackson Circle Neighborhood Center, 550 Jackson Circle.

To make a donation, visit the Fort Lee Credit Union at 3510 A Ave. or call (804) 452-0736.