Red Cross Assisting French Quarter Fire Victims

Today has been busy and quite emotional for fire victims who lived in this building at French Quarter Apartments.

Many spent the day at the American Red Cross getting help, because they are no longer able to live here, where investigators say flames last night destroyed seven apartment and caused smoke and water damage to five others.

The American Red Cross is meeting the needs of victims from Sunday night's fire at the French Quarter Apartments.

The non-profit organization provided about a dozen people with food and hotel rooms.

"If the power shut off to the building you can't get to your refrigerator. You can't get some place to cook your meals. Even if you had food in your car you have no place to cook it," says Red Cross Executive Director Katrina Farmer.

While fire crews continue their investigation a security guard is keeping a watchful eye on the damaged apartments.

A call to apartment managers prompted a reply of, "We're not talking to the media. Period.

So we found a resident who would talk and this person had plenty to say.

Moody Ihmeidan, who does not have renter's insurance, says his apartment has heavy smoke damage.

He spent the day waiting to see when he can go home.

"Our manager said they're cleaning up a town home for us right now. So, hopefully they'll get that cleaned out and we can start moving our stuff from the old apartment to the new one," explains Ihmeidan.

While helping him and other burned out residents is what the Red Cross is all about, officials say this and other recent fires are quickly using up their disaster services fund.

"We have about 100 fires a year so that would be 100 families and if you figure we had at least 7 that we've done already overnight and today, that's more than a month's worth, for sure," says Farmer.

Red Cross officials say most of the fire victims who ask for assistance are Midwestern State University students who need necessities including food, clothes, books and medications.

So, the Red Cross says it's desperately needing donations to help these victims, as well as future fire victims.

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