EagleTribune.com, North Andover, MA

Latest News

January 12, 2014


Individuals and community groups come forward with aid for fire victims

LAWRENCE — Three families who lost all their possessions in fires on Monmouth Street and Ferry Avenue in December have found new apartments and are starting to rebuild their lives thanks to the generous support they’ve received from people throughout the area.

Many individuals and community organizations have come forward, with everything from clothes to children’s toys, to help the families regain some of what they lost.

“This tragedy has opened my eyes, to how many people who have stopped what they’re doing to give us a helping hand. It’s amazing,” said Stephanie Santos, who lived in the multi-family home with her husband and three children.

“People’s generosity has been unbelievable,” agreed Nicauris Cruz, who had only been living in her apartment with her three children for five months when the fire broke out at 52 Monmouth St.

That day, Cruz was working at Sunoco in Andover when she noticed she had two missed calls on her cell phone from the Lawrence Police Department. When she called back, they told her house was on fire.

As she drove into Lawrence from Andover, she saw the smoke billowing and could not believe her eyes.

“I thought it was the end of the world,” she said of the 3-alarm fire at the multi-family house. “I cried when I saw the house of my dreams, and all the hard work I put into it, go up in flames. It was sad, going from having so much to having nothing.”

All the family’s furniture, clothing and Christmas presents went up in flames, as did many of her neighbors.

“I went back trying to find the photos, but I didn’t find anything. I was heartbroken because I lost all those memories,” said Cruz who had more than a dozen albums filled with pictures of her three children, certificates and awards they had won at their schools — Central Catholic, Greater Lawrence Technical School and Bellesini Academy.

Text Only | Photo Reprints
Latest News

AP Video
Johnson: Six Arrests, No Tear Gas in Ferguson Raw: Rescue, Relief Efforts at Japan Landslide Cadavers, a Teen, and a Medical School Dream Raw: Woman Escorted From Ferguson Protests California Drought Stings Honeybees, Beekeepers Officer Who Pointed Gun at Protesters Suspended Holder Hopes to Bring Calm to Ferguson Today in History August 21 Holder Pledges Top Investigators for Ferguson US Mission to Rescue Hostages in Syria Failed Manfred, Torre and MLB Take Ice Bucket Challenge Bank of America Reaches Record $17B Settlement Holder Reassures Ferguson Community With Visit GlobalPost CEO Remembers Foley As a Brave Man Seth Meyers Rolls Out Emmy Red Carpet Obama: World Is Appalled by Murder of Journalist Israel, Militants Trade Fire After Talks Fail Pres. George W. Bush Takes Ice Bucket Challenge Pierce Brosnan's Call to Join the Expendables Changes Coming to No-Fly List
Photos of the Week