Families displaced by 'suspicious fire' say rent should be refunded
Photo: Video by kgun9.com
CREATED Jun. 19, 2013
TUCSON (KGUN9-TV) - Families on the south side still sifting through the ashes, more than a week after one of three 'suspicious' fires demolished a handful of mobile homes.
And one husband and father tells us the one person who could help his situation won't.
Patrick McGowen was already having the week from hell.
"I just had my dialysis and then had my appendix taken out," he explained.
On Sunday, June 9th, his life and that of his family took a turn for the worse.
"I lost everything," he said. "My kids lost everything. My wife lost everything."
In the ten days since that fire, the Red Cross, friends and family have offered up food and shelter.
But McGowan says getting back on their feet will be costly.
So, he decided to ask for some help.
"I went to the landlord to ask them about my rent," he said. "They said they're not going to pay it back."
McGowan and his neighbors haven't lived in these burned out lots at the Palms Mobile Home park since the 9th.
And even if they could, the power is still shut off.
"I'm just mad," he said.
Mad and seemingly out of luck.
So, 9oys decided to take McGowan's case back to that landlord.
9OYS reporter Maggie Vespa asked the park's manager Pete Smith, "You say it's being worked out?"
"Yes, it's being worked out," he said.
Smith says, they have four tenants with four demolished homes and no insurance.
in short, money will be refunded, but it will take time.
"We're trying to help them as much as they can," said Smith. "They've lost everything."
It's a comforting promise that can't come fast enough for a father trying to prove to his kids: you can survive.
"Trying to bring them up right and stuff and then this happens, you have a lot of problems," said McGowan. "You just feel really bad."
You may remember, this fire was one of three that sparked in 30 minutes in this area.
The Pima County sheriffs department says they are still investigating.
Meanwhile, the park's owners have set up an email for those interested in donating to displaced families. To access it, click here.