Fire investigators in Swanton are trying to figure out what sparked a blaze that gutted a longtime family home.
It happened last night in the 100 block of West St. Clair Street.
News 11's Shelley Brown has the update to breaking news we first brought Thursday night.
We're talking about a home that has been a part of one family for more than three decades. Despite all of the destruction, some would call what happened to Jerry Lambert an Easter miracle.
Within just a couple of hours, Jerry Lambert thought he'd lost everything. Today the 75-year-old watched as fire investigators walked through the home where he and his late wife raised 11 children. Lambert tells News 11, "I'm gonna miss it."
The pain in his eyes says it all. But despite the destruction, Lambert is thankful.
An urn, holding his late wife's ashes, somehow rode out the blaze. He says, "It really wasn't in too bad of shape... the urn itself."
Lambert had also been concerned about his black lab, Cuddles, who was inside the home alone when the fire broke out.
For several hours the dog was missing. Jerry's son, on Butch Lambert told News 11,"The fireman said maybe he jumped out of a window when it popped."
But later that night, Cuddles was found a few blocks away. Today, the dog hasn't left Lambert's side.
Kim Grambell, a longtime family friend says, "We've got to come together and do something to help him because him and his late wife did so much for everyone else."
The Swanton community has already started up a collection to help Lambert with immediate needs. Butch Lambert explains, "All material things can be replaced, but you can't take memories away."
And while Jerry has lost nearly everything, he still has the precious things in has life. "We'll get by," he says.
If you'd like to help, an account has been set up in Jerry Lambert's name at National City Bank.
The VFW, American Legion and Elks Organizations have also started up a collection to assist Mr. Lambert with immediate needs.