EASTPOINT, Fla. (WMBB) — Thanks to the generosity of Franklin County residents and business owners, Shelia Chambers will soon have a permanent home.
Chambers was at work on January 4th, 2022, when a fire destroyed her home.
“I lost mostly everything,” Chambers said. “I was able to scrape up some stuff that didn’t actually get burnt, but most of it was destroyed for a lot of the store in the fire. It was smoke damage or water damage.”
Franklin County Sheriff A.J. Smith posted a video on Facebook showing the destruction.
“We have committed to helping her raise some money so she can get a new home,” Smith said in the video. “She owns the land. She did not have insurance…it’s a total loss. There is no rebuild in this thing or fixing it. I mean, it is it’s shot so we’re just going to give you kind of a look at what she’s got to deal with.”
The sheriff’s office and other groups throughout Franklin County helped raise money.
“The ladies at our church based had a sweets auction,” Chambers said. “And then they had a spaghetti dinner and raised money. And I have people from the community donate and they bought it. So it was great.”
It wasn’t long before they had raised $100,000 to buy Chambers a new home.
But there was a problem.
“We got ready to move it and we found out it’s got to be elevated, which we had no idea,” Smith said. “And so that delay the delivery of the home months and months and months.”
After Hurricane Michael, the regulations were changed requiring new homes in Eastpoint to be elevated.
Clayton Sembler from Tallahassee heard Chambers’ story and decided to help.
“I was talking to him about it and he’s like, I got it. I’m like, wow, you’re have to ask people,” Smith said. “They want to do good things. And Clayton is one of those guys. He’s just a fantastic person who without him, we couldn’t have gotten this thing done.”
Smith said Chambers will be back home in the coming weeks.