“It’s all gone,”: Family of six displaced after house fire in Clarendon County

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Published: Jan. 24, 2023 at 8:38 PM EST
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CLARENDON COUNTY, S.C. (WIS) - A family of six is displaced after an intense fire destroyed their home.

The fire happened Sunday evening at the 2200 block of Dingle Pond Road in Summerton. It took three hours and a tanker for fire crews to fight the blaze.

Luckily, no one was inside the home at that time but that family says they lost everything. WIS Ashley Jones spoke with the family today.

Chinetta Robinson is figuring out how to restore what’s been lost from the fire on Sunday evening, all while she and her children are still trying to heal from the death of her husband, who died just a year ago.

“It’s gone. Everything. Is gone,” said Chinetta Robinson while looking at the now scorched home.

“The roof and everything was already smoking when I got here,” said Chinetta Robinson.

Chinetta Robinson says she and her family were eating dinner at her mother’s house just one door down from their home on Sunday evening. Her son left to go to work when he noticed smoke coming from the back of the house.

“I was in total shock. I didn’t even know what to do, it took me about 20 minutes to call my mom because I was just running back and forth trying to figure out what I could do to stop the fire, but once I saw how big the fire was starting from my sister’s room. I knew there was nothing I really could do. I tried to come through the front door once I saw it, but the smoke knocked me right back,” said Jayquell Robinson.

“At first I was just. I don’t even know the word to use. Just scared thinking I was losing everything and I had to start all over again,” said Robinson.

It was one of Robinson’s worst fears coming to a reality. Robinson’s oldest son Jayquell Robinson told WIS about what’s left of their family’s home.

“Everything happened in here and it don’t even look the same,” said Jayquell Robinson.

The home originally belonged to Chinetta Robinson’s grandmother. 50-plus years of memories now left blackened and covered in soot. The living room holds the most memories for Jayquell Robinson.

“We used to come in here for Wednesday noon prayer. Everybody used to come in here and even the pictures. We had pictures that we never took down from great grandma it’s just gone,” he reminisced.

The only thing to withstand the flames was a plaque from Robinson’s great-grandmother.

He says, “It says the queen’s palace. My great grandma’s name was Queenie.”

But this tragedy just adds to another for the Robinson family. Back in August, Chinetta Robinson’s husband died from complications with Covid-19. He was just 41 years old. Robinson says many of his memories were also destroyed in that fire.

Chinetta Robinson says, “Just trying to keep it together for the kids. Of course, putting God first and praying for strength every day and my family has been a huge support to me. They help me every day, you know, coping with everything and taking care of my children.

“My mom is strong. She holds us up, and I hold her up. She holds my siblings up as much as she can,” said Jayquell Robinson.

Robinson tells WIS a space heater in her daughter’s room fell onto the bed and caused the fire. The only thing that made it out is a pile of clothes.

The family has put together a GoFundMe, and anyone can help the family as they try to replace some of the things they lost.

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