By Joe Lewis - Staff Writer
Nov. 21, 2012 — A fire late Monday afternoon destroyed the home occupied by Ronnie and Juanita Callihan and their foster children.
Fire departments across Carter County responded to a call from the Barker Flats area just after 3 p.m., but were unable to save the house.
Additions to the home throughout the years caused problems for firefighters as the flames were trapped between new walls and old walls.
Juanita Callihan and her adult son were able to get out quickly along with the three foster children, aged 4, 5 and 9, and none were injured.
“I opened up my home and my heart to three small girls whom I love as my own,” said Callihan as she watched her home become engulfed in flames.
The Callihans were able to save some clothing and pictures, but everything else, including nearly $10,000 worth of food storage, was lost in the fire.
The family plans to stay with family and friends until they can find a permanent home.
Even in the midst of tragedy, however, Callihan’s spirit of gratitude was able to shine through.
”This Thanksgiving I’ll bow my head and give thanks for what I still have,” she said. “I don’t know where we'll all be when I do that, but I’ll give thanks.”
It was late Sunday night when Lucy's Diner in Grayson, known as Randy's Roadside for many years, also was destroyed by fire.
The Grayson Fire Department, along with crews from Olive Hill, Hitchins and Norton Branch, responded to a call around 9 p.m. and found smoke rolling out of the building.
Crews were forced to break down the building's door and cut a hole in the roof in order to gain access to the flames.
Both blazes remain under investigation.