Berryville home heavily damaged, pet dies in fire
A Berryville home was heavily damaged and a family pet died in a fire early Wednesday morning.
Homeowner Danny Johnson said the fire broke out in his home at 506 N. Springfield Ave. while he and his wife, Betty Johnson, were sleeping.
"I woke up at 3:30 a.m.," he said. "Me and my wife were both here."
Johnson said the fire and smoke spread quickly through the house. Everyone made it out, he said except for one of their dogs.
"It's tough. They're like a member of the family," Johnson said. "We thought maybe he had gotten out as we were leaving, but, as fast as the smoke and fire ran through the house, we just had to get out."
He said the fire department responded and stayed at the site for quite a while to get the fire under control. Johnson said both the gas and power were shut off in an effort to put out the fire.
"It kept having hot spots and flaring up," he said. "They asked if we had propane, and I said 'Not to my knowledge.' "
Johnson said he thinks the cause of the fire was most likely electrical.
"I don't know for sure. We still haven't gotten the fire report," he said. "I think it was electrical."
Johnson said not much from the home was salvageable after the fire was put out. He said he and his wife lost most of what was in the home, including items that had been passed down from family members such as his great-grandfather's fishing rods.
Johnson said he and his wife have been working on improvements to the house for at least a year. Recently, he said, they were having the home insulated because it originally was not.
"I would guess it was originally built around 1950," Johnson said. "We've just been going through it little by little."
Johnson said Tyson Foods is setting him and his wife up with housing for a week. After that, Johnson said they will probably look for a small house in the area.
The American Red Cross also is providing assistance.
"We responded and provided the family with temporary lodging and gave them money for food and clothing essentials to help them get back on their feet," said Rick Harvey, with the American Red Cross serving Northwest Arkansas. "We also made available our volunteer nurses and mental health professionals, if needed."
Another house fire was reported Thursday morning on Spruce Street in Berryville, but details were unavailable at press time.