Chesapeake Sheriff’s deputy rebuilds after fire destroys family home

CHESAPEAKE, Va. – A Chesapeake Sheriff’s deputy is starting over after his family lost nearly everything in a house fire.

“We got out fine, but we lost everything in the midst of it," Terry Harper told News 3 reporter Brian Hill.

Harper, his wife Chyrese and their four children were displaced on April 8. According to fire investigators, the call came in at 6:23 p.m.

Firefighters arrived to the home in the Deep Creek section of the city six minutes later and quickly extinguished the fire, which started in the kitchen. The family was inside and managed to get out thanks to their smoke detectors. However, Terry tried putting out the blaze.

“I ran to try and turn the power off and put it out with the extinguisher, but it had grown so rapidly," he explained.

Unfortunately, mostly everything inside was destroyed.

“I felt for my family, felt for my kids. Five, six years being here but a lifetime with your family and so many memories and things like that were in the home," Terry explained.

A family friend has created a GoFundMe page to help them get back on their feet.

It reads: “Terry and Chyrese Harper, parents of 4 (Terry Jr. Tiara, Taija, Tyson) are currently searching and believing God for a new home for their family. Once found, they will then to have to purchase all new furniture, kitchenware, linens, clothing etc.”

The family said the community has really stepped up to help.

"People being a blessing that you have never seen. It’s just been amazing," Terry mentioned.

According to the fundraiser, they also ran a daycare out of the home.

Chyrese told News 3 she has been using a temporary location to continue those services.

“Bright Beginnings Child Care was birthed and was fully operated out of their home until the evening of April 8th. Many children and adults' lives have been enhanced as a result of their relationship with this wonderful family," according to the fundraising page.

They have also found temporary housing.

“We are currently in a Airbnb," Chyrese said. "We had funds set aside that were allocated to us. However, they will soon run out.”

Although what's next is up in the air, the family said they are not losing sight.

"I put it in God’s hands, and we know that he has greater for us," Terry said.

The goal is to raise $25,000.

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