METAIRIE, LA (WVUE) - The house in the 6800 block of Shelton St holds special meaning for Archie Ellis and his family.
"This was my mama's house," said Ellis. "She rebuilt it and got it looking good from scrap." And now that Ellis's mother has passed away, the family was working to renovate the home. It's not easy for them to look at the charred walls and burnt ruins.
"I was hurting," said Ellis. "I was looking at it and crying, but it's going to make me stronger."
Jefferson Parish Fire Fighters were called out right before 9 p.m. Saturday. They say when they arrived at the scene, the back of the building was already fully engulfed. The flames made it hard to fight the fire, at one point, the fire was so strong it scorched the side of a neighboring home.
"My mama called me," said Regina Fort, who lived across the street. "They had fire people out here. I heard and came outside. Thank God nobody got hurt."
Fire crews say no one was inside the building at the time. They are still investigating, trying to figure out how all this happened.
Ellis has questions too.
"It's just not adding up," said Ellis. "I don't see cement just catching fire." Ellis says the home has a lot of smoke and water damage, but they were able to save some things. The family plans on moving forward and focusing on just one thing in the coming days.
"Rebuilding," said Ellis. "Praying and we're going to rebuild. My mama is looking over us."