Community pitches in to help elderly fire victim

By Keitha Nelson - bio | email

BATON ROUGE, LA (WAFB) - A local contractor is helping an elderly woman rebuild her home after a fire destroyed it in October.

Myrtle Ennis, 83, said she may have lost everything in that blaze, but she never lost hope.

Ennis' family has owned a quaint house on Boyd Street for more than 100 years. The house looks good from the outside, but the damage on the inside tells a different tale.

The inside of the home is filled with soot and ashes after Ennis accidentally dropped a match while trying to light a space heater in her home. Firefighters scrambled to save her place, but the the fire left Ennis' home with $30,000 worth of damage.

Ennis has since dried her tears, and is wearing a smile these days. The help this mother of four says she's been praying for has finally arrived.

"It just touched me when she was saying she didn't have any insurance," said local contractor Edwin Baker. "And I have seen that so many times."

Baker says Ennis reminded him of his own grandmother. After watching her story on 9News, he sprung into action. Baker made a few phone calls to firefighters, Home Depot and Best Buy to help out.

"The hope is to get her back home and have everything restored even better than it was so that she won't have to worry about anything," Baker said. "Just come in with her toothbrush and say I'm home."

"I appreciate it from the bottom of my heart to the top of it," Ennis said. "What's being done for me, I do."

Baker says he is in it for the long haul. Saturday was just the first of many hard working days to come. They are still in need of supplies, donations and volunteers.

If you can help in anyway, call 726-4947.

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