Woman dies as Sophia house goes up in flames


Vanci Hodge, 74, died on Wednesday, assumingly from smoke inhalation, after a mid-morning fire ravaged her neighbours’ house at Squatting Area, ‘B’ Field Sophia.

According to the woman’s husband, Leon James, she remained asleep in her bedroom during the early stages of the fire from which thick clouds of smoke bellowed. She was subsequently evacuated.

James noted that at the time, she was breathing fine, but had already inhaled smoke.

Hodge was rushed to the Georgetown Public Hospital by relatives but reportedly died while en-route to the medical facility.

The woman had several underlying medical conditions including stage 4 cancer.

“I don’t know what’s the next move from that but I’d be grateful if some sort of authority could come in because the whole one side (of his house) is damaged. I don’t know who’s gonna fix it or who’s gonna replace it but that could be replaced, but my wife can’t be replaced. My wife died,’’ an emotional James told the News Room.

Leon James holds up his dead wife’s Identification Card (Photo: News Room/April 14, 2021)

Meanwhile, the fire has also left six families homeless and counting their losses.

Although the fire is suspected to have started from a lit kerosene stove, uncertainty remains.

Twenty-one-year-old Olivia Griffith, a single mother of a three-year-old and four-month-old, was returning home from the clinic when she heard the news.

By the time she reached home everything was unfortunately destroyed by the fire.

Twenty-one-year-old Olivia Griffith (Photo: News Room/April 14, 2021)

Her cousin, 19-year-old, Zonobia Whyte, explained that she was at work when she received a call from her mother relating the news.

“It was very shocking to me. I even started to cry. I asked my boss to leave my work to come home and when I reach home, I see everything flat. All my savings, all my things that I bought-new stuff that ain’t even use yet- everything burned to ashes and now I have nothing, I have to start all over again so I would glad for the help if anybody willing to help,” the teen explained.

19-year-old Zonobia Whyte (Photo: News Room/April 14, 2021)

Another relative, 32-year-old, Dion Kellmon was also at work when her neighbor visited her work place to deliver the news.

“I’m a mother of three children. All my son’s common entrance books gone flat, savings, everything gone, nothing ain’t save,” Kellmon explained.

32-year-old Dion Kellmon (Photo: News Room/April 14, 2021)

She is the mother of 12-year-old, 11-year-old and 8-year-old boys.

Persons willing to assist Olivia Griffith can contact her on 592 698 3872.

Persons willing to assist Zonobia Whyte can contact her on 592 679 1268.

Persons willing to assist Dion Kellmon can contact her on 592 665 9906.

Persons willing to assist Leon James can contact him on 592 661 0788.


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