Clothing, Toy Collection for Christmas Day Fire Victims in Luzerne County

HUNTINGTON TOWNSHIP, Pa. -- Holiday help is on the way for a family of six who lost their home to flames on Christmas Day in Luzerne County.

A collection drive is going on Wednesday to replace what they lost.

Officials with the Huntington Valley Volunteer Fire Department posted to Facebook Tuesday night that they'd be collecting toys, cash, gift cards and clothes on Wednesday, Dec. 26.

"We just felt compelled with the situation that this family needed a little something extra, so yesterday we did our job putting out the fire, and today we're doing our job helping with the healing process and getting that all started, " said firefighter Dustin Thomas.

Fire officials say most of the damage to the home on Cope Road in Huntington Township is to the front bedrooms. The family who lives here, including four young children, were forced to sleep somewhere else on Christmas night. Now, their community is trying to make up for it.

"I'm always out to helping people, especially these people. Anytime is bad, but especially on a special day," said Sally Longenberger of Bloomsburg.

Volunteer firefighters are calling it a toy drive, but they're also collecting cash, gift cards, and clothes for the four children all day long here at the fire station in Huntington Township.

"Basic necessities for the family. Basically, anything people feel like anything a family that lost everything on Christmas would need," added Thomas.

"I brought stuffed animals for the children, a blanket, and also a scarf," saidĀ Longenberger.

Neighbors tell us the family just moved in about two months ago, and although mostly everyone we saw who donated Wednesday didn't even know them. They say it was the right thing to do.

"I mean we saw it on the news this morning, and I said this is the first thing we're going to do this morning is come out and donate to this cause. Dreadful, for a family to lose everything like this. Four little children, it's the biggest day of the year for them," said Carol and Harold Potoeski of Mocanaqua.

Volunteer firefighters will be collecting until 8 p.m. on Wednesday.

According to a Facebook post, the two girls' sizes are 7/8 and 10/12 and the two boys' sizes are 4T and 10/12.

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