Published DateBy Daymond Steer
EFFINGHAM — A local family is looking for donations after a fire consumed much of their residence at 243 Wilkinson Swamp Road. Two pets, a dog and a bird, were killed.
Stephanie Liberopoulos and her boyfriend Grover Fisher had lived at the home for the past 24 years with their 24-year-old daughter, Crystal Liberopoulos. There was no insurance on the home.
"We had pets die in the fire," said Stephanie Liberopoulos. "We lost everything."
The dog that died was a 4-year-old yellow lab named "Snowball," and the bird was a cockatoo named "Molly."
Effingham fire chief Randy Burbank said about half the home was salvageable. Burbank said the cause of the fire was electrical problem near the fuse box, which was in a room containing the washer and dryer.
But Stephanie Liberopoulos and Fisher tore the whole house down because there wasn't much they could do with it.
Stephanie Liberopoulos was the only person as the residence when the fire started. She was outside feeding their other animals when she noticed smoke coming from the house. The family raises many different types of livestock including pigs, chickens, ducks and geese. Those animals continue to live on their property.
"We have a little bit of everything," said Stephanie Liberopoulos.
After seeing the smoke, Stephanie Liberopoulos ran to the house and opened a mudroom door, which allowed another dog to escape. When she opened a second door into a main part of the house, the smoke prevented her from entering.
Crystal Liberopoulos came home early from work, and Stephanie Liberopoulos directed her to call 9-1-1.
The family was given some relief from the Red Cross. Some friends lent them a camper but it isn't warm enough for them to safely stay in. Currently, the family is staying in some friends' home on a temporary basis.
The family is looking for donations to help get them back on their feet. Donations can be made to the "Crystal Liberopoulos Fire Fund" at Citizen's Bank in Ossipee. Family friend Warren Skelling said he's doing everything he can to give the family a fresh start, and he will be trying to raise money for them in other ways.
"There's going to be a long road ahead of us," said Skelling.
Checks can be mailed to Citizen Bank at NH-421 P.O. Box 1000 Manchester, NH 03105.