Limerick family homeless after Christmas Day blaze

David Hurley

Reporter:

David Hurley

Suzanne Crawford pictured outside her home while her son, Jeffrey, is pictured with Cllr Frankie Daly inside the gutted building. [Pictures: Michael Cowhey]
A GRANDMOTHER whose home was destroyed by fire on Christmas Day says she’ll never be able to celebrate Christmas again.

A GRANDMOTHER whose home was destroyed by fire on Christmas Day says she’ll never be able to celebrate Christmas again.

Suzanne Crawford, 42, was at her brother’s grave when the fire broke out at her home at Rostrevor Park, Caherdavin.

Her daughter, Rosie, 19, and her two grandchildren Sienna, 1 , and Jeffrey, 3 months, managed to escape the house, which was completely gutted.

Suzanne and her family have been staying in emergency accommodation at a hotel in the city since St Stephen’s Day and Limerick City and County Council is making efforts to find them a new home.

“My two grandkids were inside with their mother so she got out and she managed to them out and by the time I got back there were crowds around the place, fire brigades, guards, everything,” said Suzanne.

The semi-detached house, which was allocated to the mother-of-four through the Rental Assistance Scheme (RAS), was completely destroyed in the blaze which broke out just after midday on Christmas Day.

“We lost everything from our toothbrushes to the television and the three-piece suite - what we left the house with that morning is all we have left,” said Suzanne who only moved in a number of months ago.

Cllr Frankie Daly, who helped secure emergency accommodation for Suzanne and her family on St Stephen’s Day, said that what had happened is hard to comprehend.

“It is like a nightmare, it is like something out of a horror movie – all her contents, all her things, all her memories went up in smoke and to be honest I’m even upset about it myself,” he said.

Suzanne, who is hoping to be rehoused early in the New Year, says she doesn’t think she will ever be able to celebrate Christmas again.

“Christmas was ruined, we were left with nothing and in the space of 10 minutes everything was gone. I left my drive that morning expecting to play with the kids and came back to nothing,” she told the Leader.

However, she says she’s grateful that nobody was injured or killed.

“They told us if we were asleep, they would have been looking for bones.”

The results of forensic tests carried out by gardai will not be known for several days although a garda spokesman said foul play is not suspected.