School rallies around Madisonville family who lost home in fire - FOX 8 WVUE New Orleans News, Weather, Sports

School rallies around Madisonville family who lost home in fire

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Inside the Puipuro family home in Madisonville Inside the Puipuro family home in Madisonville
Madisonville, La. -

A fire ripped through the inside of a home in Madisonville, making it unlivable. It happened Sunday on Bell Pointe Loop.  Jennifer Puipuro can't believe how quickly the fire spread inside her home.

After the New Year's holiday, with Christmas decorations still hung, the Puipuros headed out on a family vacation.  But Sunday night, their lives changed.

"My son wanted to go snow skiing for Christmas so that's what we did," Puipuro explained.

The family was only an hour away from home, driving back from their vacation in Tennessee, when a neighbor called to say their house was on fire. "You don't expect to come home to anything like this. I think this is the most tragic thing I've had to go through," Puipuro said.

The family of four lost all of their clothes and most other possessions in the house were destroyed by smoke.

Over at Lake Castle School, where both of the Puipuro kids are students, a donation drive is under way to help the family.

Arleen Parker, who organized the effort, says parents who didn't even know the Puipuros are opening their wallets and their hearts.

"I sent the email out like 7 or 8 p.m., I think it was Tuesday night.  And right away, people in the car line dropped things off to us. This morning I got phone calls from the office saying we have checks, we have gift cards if you want to come get them," Parker explained.

The help has been overwhelming to Jennifer Puipuro.  She said, "Lake Castle has been unbelievable... it's like family... they help us out with a lot."

Puipuro says the donations are so helpful to her family because they've received limited assistance from the Red Cross, and their insurance hasn't fully kicked in yet.  But, to Puipuro, the most important thing is knowing is that her family has support from the community and knowing that they are safe.

The Madisonville Fire Department is still investigating the cause of the fire.

Lake Castle School is accepting donations from anyone, not just parents of students, for the Puipuro family. The school is located on Highway 21 in Madisonville.

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