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Family of five loses everything in house fire, including dog



CONWAY, Ark.- Tragedy struck in Conway as a family home burned to the ground.

A single mother of four kids, all under the age of 10, made it out safe. The family lost everything including their beloved dog.

“I don’t know, that’s so overwhelming to me,” said Martha Mattson, the mother of four.

At the time of the fire, the family was at their new house picking up the keys. However, they hadn’t packed anything yet, so they lost it all.

“We weren’t even gone an hour and by the time we got home it was all smoke,” said Mattson.

Mattson said that all four of her kids were in the car so no one was injured.

“It started in my room at this end and the kids’ rooms are at the other end so it took my room, the kitchen and part of the living room and the rest is smoke damage,” said Mattson.

Mattson said their dog, Charlie, was found in the kid’s room.

“He was at the far end of the house and that’s what got him was the smoke,” said Mattson.

One day after the fire, the Mattson family was unloading a car full of donations, thanks to their next-door neighbor Jill Hollowell. Hollowell said she saw the fire when she came home from work.

“I was worried about who was in the house so that freaked me out,” said Hollowell.

Now Hollowell is helping get the family back on their feet by collecting donations from all over central Arkansas.

“Clothes for the kids, we’ve got a few dishes, toiletries, oh the rabbit, we got a rabbit cage,” said Hollowell.

Hollowell said she even has some friends donating furniture for the home. Mattson said she has a lot to do in order to get back to normal but right now she’s focusing on the kids.

“We’ve just really been focusing on getting them comfortable,” said Mattson.

The Conway Fire Department said the cause of the fire is still under investigation.

If you want to help the family with donations, click here.

They are also looking for basic household items, such as beds, dressers, crib, clothes and cooking utensils.


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