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Abingdon family forced out of home in fire that killed dog

Posted at 11:15 PM, Mar 05, 2019
and last updated 2019-03-06 07:58:07-05

ABINGDON, Md. (WMAR) — If it hadn't been for a friend coming by to say hello, the Holloways may not have made it out of their Abingdon home on Crisfield Drive on time.

On February 25, an electrical fire in their garage forced the family out of their home and caused tens of thousands of dollars in damages and killed their dog.

When the fire started Ron Holloway was in the bathtub relaxing. He would have had no idea the house was on fire if a friend didn’t rush in to tell him.

“We were on the other side of the house and didn’t know it was happening,” Ron said.

Their rescue dog Milo was stuck inside, and firefighters got him out in time to say goodbye to Ron’s wife Karen.

“I literally watched him die,” Karen said. “That was the hardest thing I ever had to do in my life. I actually watched the cloudiness just.”

Firefighters ruled the fire an accident caused by an electrical failure. The Holloways were in the process of looking for homeowner’s insurance but didn’t have it.

“We had a pipe break upstairs and the insurance paid for that,” said Ron. “Once that was all fixed up they terminated us and let us go and we haven’t been able to get back in the groove of things to afford to pay for insurance again.”

Neighbors have been very generous— the Red Cross also putting them up in a hotel for a few days with clean clothes.

For Karen this is just another obstacle to overcome.

She’s survived multiple bouts with cancer— she's wearing a bandage for a tumor that was just removed. She dyed her hair the color of a rainbow to remind herself to look at the bright side of life.

“It’s my fun thing since getting sick,” Karen said. “I was very sick for three years and when you get that close to death you kind of appreciate life. That might be another reason why I’m being so strong because I have been through a lot.”

The home they moved into over 20 years won't be the same without little Milo running through it.

As the Holloways have done so many times they will pick up the pieces.

“Just start over and get going,” Ron said.

They had contractors over to get an estimate on how much the smoke damage will cost.

If you would like to help the family with their mounting expenses, click here.