A fire in Jones County leaves a family of 8 homeless

JONES COUNTY,MS (WDAM) - A Jones County divorced mother of seven has been homeless since her house went up in flames a month ago.

Melissa Mapp still shakes her head in disbelief as she looks at her home on Highway 184 that burned on May 30th. Mapp says that it's a day she says she'll never forget.

Mapp said, "My children I was at the park and I got a phone call that my house was burning down. By the time I got here, it was already consumed in fire."

Immediately after the fire, The American Red Cross placed Mapp and her children in a hotel were they have been staying ever since.

She is a pastor of a small congregation and mighty woman of faith.

Seven on Your Side heard of her story by way of an email from a woman named Nancy Bell, whose brother was moved to help.  Hattiesburg businessman Ronnie Blackwell, who is also a Christian, took Mapp's story to his church family and they began to pull resource together to help the family of 8.

Blackwell said "I found out about her situation through an online article that her house burned."

He said, he felt compelled to help.

Blackwell said "The immediate need that she has now is for some temporary housing. You know she is in a hotel room with her children and have been there for a month now, so she really needs a temporary place to go to get her settle in were she can make a home for those kids."

Mapp did not have insurance.  She has three girls and four boys ages 5 to 14.

If you are interested in helping the Mapp family in any way, you can contact Ronnie Blackwell at 601-261-2609.

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