Tragedy Brings Community Together


SCRANTON, LACKAWANNA COUNTY (WBRE/WYOU-TV) Flames destroyed a family home on Christmas Day.

 Now there’s an effort underway to help the victims put their lives back together.

  Eyewitness News Reporter, Anja Whitehead, has details on a musical fundraiser.

Christmas day is supposed to be a magical time for one Scranton family it will always be remembered as the day tragedy struck.

“Around 3 a.m. We got a call from my brother saying the house was on fire. So we rushed over as soon as we could” Said Rich Howells

Rich’s mother saved her husband and autistic son from the burning home.

 “(She) was able to get through the flames somehow to get outside to get a ladder… And rescued my father and brother… She had severe burns on her arms, up and down her arms, her hands some on her face as well.”

The home is destroyed, the family devastated.

 When members of the local music scene heard of the news, they decided to put on a surprise benefit for the family.

“I think the fact that music community came together to put on this event without rich’s involvement or knowledge really speaks to his character…  So not only is rich able to step in and help his family but he has the backing of the music community” added Samuel O’Connell, Musician

“Nothing better than that. Helping someone who genuinely needs it and deserves it. And i think that’s what’s going to keep- good karma’s just going to keep rolling” noted Nate Williams, Rapper- Producer.

“With six bands, and two comedians, there will be something for everyone and all age groups.”

This benefit is bringing hope to the Howell’s once again.

“It’s so overwhelming that everyone has been so kind and generous to the family… We are so indebted to the local community for helping us out during this awful, awful time” said Tanya Howells, Daughter-in-law of Homeowners.

The benefit for the Howells family will be at the FM Kirby Center on Public Square in Wilkes-Barre  his Friday at 6:30 pm. Tickets are available online

Copyright 2019 Nexstar Broadcasting, Inc. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten, or redistributed.

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