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The home of the Buckley family in Rumney was destroyed by fire Saturday morning. (DAN SEUFERT PHOTO)

Rumney family unbowed by fire that destroyed home

RUMNEY - Charles Buckley and his daughter Kristen were setting up laptops in a warm home among several small camps next to the Rumney Bible Conference buildings Sunday, just 24 hours after they seemingly lost everything when their home burned down. They clearly weren't devastated.

"Everyone's healthy, that's the key," Charles Buckley said with a grin. "We lost some material things, but we're Christians and Christ is still on the throne, so we'll be fine."

Buckley and his wife were away from the family's three-story, 5,300-square-foot home at 500 Depot St. when firefighters said a fire in the home's chimney spread to the attic. Buckley's wife was out of state, attending the funeral of her sister, and Charles Buckley was elsewhere in town.

Kristen, 15, said she was sleeping when her sister Shaina, 18, woke her up at about 7 a.m. Saturday.

"The smoke alarms were going off and the neighbors were calling saying the house was on fire," she said. "I could see the smoke in the house as we got outside."

Both fled the house, making sure they got the family's dog and two cats were safe with them. The family hamster died in the fire.

Family and friends comforted the sisters and her father as the house burned.

"I didn't realize the whole house was going to burn up, or I would have gotten more from inside before I left," Kristen Buckley said.

The family is living in a home with the help of friends. They were loaned several laptops by a local business, which will help Charles Buckley keep his engineering business going.

The house was fully insured, Buckley said.

"Now it's just a matter of my wife picking a new house plan, however long that takes," he said. "We'll get the new one built quickly."


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