City opens disaster resource center for Chesapeake fire victims

CHESAPEAKE, Va. (WAVY) — Residents affected by last week’s fire at the Chesapeake Crossing apartment community will be able to collect some of their items starting Tuesday.

The apartment complex received waivers from the City of Chesapeake on Sunday to enter some of the homes affected by the fire, pack up salvageable items from the units that were given waivers and move them to a staging area in the parking lot.

First Atlantic Restoration and Boyd Homes will work together to move the items.

Residents who wish to move their items can visit the phase three clubhouse at 1925 Robert Hall Boulevard between 9 a.m. and 5 p.m. Monday through Wednesday.

They must complete a request form, or email a request to RobertHall@BoydHomes.com.

Abba List and other volunteers will also be on site to help transport items from the parking lot to new or temporary residences. To request these services, residents need to add a delivery address and contact information to their request form or email.

Residents can also hire their own licensed, bonded, and insured moving company, but they need to make an appointment to make sure an employee can escort them to the apartment.

This comes after The Red Cross and the City of Chesapeake opened a disaster resource center on Thursday for residents affected by the fire.

The resource center was at New Galilee Missionary Baptist Church on South Military Highway, and residents were able to receive food, clothing, mental health services, legal aid and medical assistance.

The city called the resource center a “one-stop shop” to connect residents with assistance from government and private agencies, including Boyd Homes, ABBA list, a DMV mobile office and more.

Crews were called to the four-alarm fire at Chesapeake Crossing off Robert Hall Boulevard after 4:30 a.m. Saturday. Three three-story buildings were involved in the blaze. It took over two hours for firefighters to extinguish it. In the end, the fire killed three people and injured six others.

3 dead, 6 hurt after fire at Chesapeake senior living complex

Resident Lillie Pierce said she awoke Saturday to a firefighter kicking in her door. She credited him with saving her life.

“He just came in there, got me, threw a robe, and then wrapped me up in a blanket and carried me outside,” she said. “It took awhile for it to sink in, and especially where we couldn’t find my friends and we found out that they had passed. It gets better every day, you know, I just feel sorry for people that didn’t have insurance.”

Resident Barbara Peppers said she lost everything.

“When I came out of that apartment, I had on a pair of jeans, a t-shirt, and a pair of sandals,” she said.

On Friday, all of the residents whose apartments have been cleared returned to their homes.

The remaining 73 homes were not cleared, and some of them were condemned by the City or placed under restricted access.

If you would like to donate to assist the victims, you can do so through the United Way of South Hampton Roads’ website. A special fund has been created under the “donate” tab on the site. Donated items are not being accepted at this time, only monetary donations.

Family members and friends attempting to locate loved ones may either e-mail RobertHall@BoydHomes.com or call 757-275-7696 between the hours of 8 a.m. to 5 p.m., Monday through Friday.