"I was at my mom's house putting together one of my youngest daughter's gifts and happened to get the phone call that the house was on fire," he says.
But on this gloomy day after Christmas, Thompson and his kids return to the ruins. Crime scene tape still blocks the remains, but this family is scoping out anything worth salvaging. The TV is melted, the XBOX destroyed, years of pictures are likely gone forever, and a Christmas tree is incinerated, along with the gifts below it.
"All we have is basically the clothes that we had on our back at the time," Thompson says.
At this time, we have been relayed the specific clothing needs of the children.
Angel (12 years old)
- Pants: Women's 10 short
- Shirt: Women's Medium or Large
- Underwear: Women's 6
- Shoes: Women's 10
Chris (9 years old)
- Pants: 14/16 husky
- Shirt: 16 Boy's
- Underwear: Boy's Large
- Shoes: Men's 7
Emmalee (4 years old)
- Pants: Kid's 7
- Shirt: Kid's 6/7
- Underwear: Kid's 6
- Shoes - Kid's 12
If you live in South Carolina or northeastern Georgia, you may be in a position to help them directly. Otherwise, donations may be sent payable to Tony Thompson, c/o PO Box 1002, Wagener SC 29164, or to a Paypal account via email, sdconder at yahoo dot com.
(Tip of the Black Hat to WRDW-TV in Augusta, Georgia, and to Christine Niles of Forward Boldly.)