UPDATED: Fire destroys Conrad home, cause under investigation - KWWL - Eastern Iowa Breaking News, Weather, Closings

UPDATED: Fire destroys Conrad home, cause under investigation


A Grundy County family is homeless after fire gutted their house Tuesday afternoon.

The fire started at their home in the 500 block of Oak Street in Conrad around 2 p.m.  Three departments were called in to help battle the blaze, and early estimates put the damage at around $40,000.

We talked with the fire victims, who are struggling to get by, but thankful to be alive.

514 Oak Street in Conrad is in ruins following a fire Tuesday afternoon.  Windows are blown out, siding melted, and wood charred.

Larry and Connie Stanley own the house and weren't there when the fire started.  But their daughter, her husband and their three kids were inside.

"They came down and said something was on fire.  So I went upstairs, and it was scary.  I couldn't breathe," said Sean Fleming, fire victim.

Fleming pushed through the smoke and went back downstairs with son 7-year-old Draven and daughter 4-year-old Pieper.  Thankfully, everyone was able to get out safely by pushing a screen out of the basement window.

But then Fleming panicked, not realizing Draven's twin brother Damien had walked out through the back door by himself.  Once they found each other, the family stood in shock as their home went up in flames.  The Stanleys made their way to the house and couldn't believe their eyes.

"Saw my grandkids running around, and they're asking 'Where we gonna live?' Living room, dining room, kitchen are just gone.  Can't even tell where the glass cases or TV entertainment was.  It's all gone, too," Larry Stanley said.

Fleming did dare to go back in the burning house, and saved the family dog.  But after the fire, only a few personal belongings could be salvaged.  Stanley's daughter Shelby is thrilled to see how the community's already pitched in to help.

"We've only lived in Conrad for four years and we don't really know anyone.  And the whole community was there to help, and we don't really know any of them.  I mean that was very surprising and they were great help and we really appreciate that," said Shelby See, daughter of fire victims Connie and Larry Stanley.

The Red Cross is putting the family up in a hotel for now.  But long term, they're not sure if they'll be able to rebuild their home or have start fresh somewhere else.  Despite the hardship, they're just grateful to have all survived this fire.

The state fire marshall is still investigating what may have started the fire.

Additional Note:

If you'd like to help the family recover from this fire, you can contact Jill Collins at Westbrook Acres in Gladbrook (victim Lisa Fleming's employer) at 641-473-2016, or Chris at Grandview Heights in Marshalltown (victim Connie Stanley's employer) at 641-752-4581.

Here are the family's clothing sizes for donations:

Draven, Age 7:  6T

Damien, Age 7: 7-8T

Pieper, Age 4: 4T

Sean Fleming, Size 34 x 32 pant and X-Large shirt

Lisa Fleming, Size 7/8 pant, Medium shirt

Larry Stanley, Size 42 x 30 pant and 2-3 XL shirt

Connie Stanley, 22W clothing or 2-3 XL shirts

Lisa Fleming & Connie Stanley are employed at nursing homes and could particularly use donations of scrubs.



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