SPRINGFIELD, Mass. (WWLP) – Childhood memories came rushing back to Van Thomas as he looked at what was left of the home he grew up next door to on Suffolk Street in Springfield’s Upper Hill neighborhood.
An overnight fire burned the house to the ground, and caused extensive damage to his childhood home.
Thomas told 22News it was in the family since 1967 and his mother had recently put it on the market to sell. “This is devastating really, this is sad. She was just restoring the house, she was trying to put it up for sale. She’s going to be devastated when I tell her,” he said.
Springfield Fire Spokesman Dennis Leger told 22News the fire started just before 11:30 Saturday night.
The vacant house was being renovated, and Justine Williams who lives across the street told 22News oddly enough, it wasn’t the first time neighbors looked out their windows to see it engulfed in flames. “Another guy was trying to rehab it and he lived up in Boston, I don’t know what happened to him. That’s the second fire in that house, there was one in there a couple of years ago,” she said.
Leger said there was no electricity in the house, leaving many neighbors, including Alfonso Valle, wondering how it started. “I am a little worried about it, but I like said this place has been quiet for a long time, hardly anything goes on by these streets at all,” he said.
The fire burned so hot, three neighboring houses were damaged but fortunately, no one was hurt.
Leger told 22News the Arson and Bomb Squad are investigating how the fire started.