8 families displaced after West End apartment fire

Posted at 8:58 PM, Oct 26, 2013
and last updated 2013-10-27 21:27:20-04

HENRICO, Va. (WTVR) -- Two dozen people are homeless after fire ripped through an apartment complex Saturday night along the 200 block of Province Drive in Henrico's West End.

The fire department responded to the fire at Nottingham Apartments shortly after 8 p.m. Three buildings were damaged in the blaze and eight apartments suffered fire or smoke damage.

The intense flames melted  the vinyl shutters one one building as the fire crawled up to Kimberly Menzies’ second floor bedroom. Her family is one of the eight displaced from the fire that turned her belongings into rubble.

"I know they said their going to put us up in another apartment and everything, but now what?” said Menzies. “I lost my cats. I feel like I lost everything. I've never felt this way ever.”

Henrico fire officials said the blaze started on the first floor bedroom inside until 209 and quickly spread, leaping out the window and up to the roof.

That's when Menzies' son and his girlfriend drove up to the scene and rushed to call their mom.

Investigators have interviewed the family where the fire started, but said the exact cause is still under investigation.

Even though fire officials said the firewall did its job, the fire spread above to the ceiling and attic area -- and then to three other units.

Eighteen adults and six children now have to rely on the Red Cross for shelter, clothing and food.

One bright spot in the fire provided a glimmer of hope for the Menzies. Their “Strangers in Moscow” Michael Jackson album was one of the few things not destroyed by the fire.

"It was great to see that because that once again could be the energy that pushes them through the day,” said the Red Cross’ Jonathan McNamara.

Investigators are still working to determine what sparked the blaze.

Stay with and CBS 6 News for updates on this story.