Fire destroys family's home

By Anthony Antoine |

Published 01/12 2014 11:05PM

Updated 01/14 2014 10:30AM

Update: 6:01 pm, 1/13/14, Monday
RANTOUL -- Firefighters responded to a call in the 1700-block of Eater Drive Sunday. No one was hurt, but the family living there had just lost their home in the Gifford tornado weeks earlier. It's a lot of heartache for anyone to deal with. WCIA-3's Anthony Antoine speaks to the family.

After everything the LaBounty family's been through,they say there's nowhere to go but up. Ruth Martin was getting ready to go to church.

"I was backing out, I looked and I said, 'what's all the commotion with the flashing lights and several police car's down the street?'"

Her neighbor's house was on fire.

"I was just horrified of what the house looked like."

Harley LaBounty tried starting his car, but something wasn't right.

"I let it run for a little bit, and it started smoking."

Minutes later the car, garage and the house caught fire. Neighbors called for help. It's the second time Harley LaBounty's life was turned upside down.

His daughter, Rebecca Humphrey, says, "The tornado in Gifford displaced the family in November. When the sirens went off they went next door to be with grandma then they ducked in the bathroom."

LaBounty says, "We were in there about five minutes and come back out and everything was gone except the bathroom. The house was clean across the street, what was left of it."

It's a lot for anyone to deal with, but everyone's alive and they still have each other. LaBounty's daughter is thankful.

"Thank goodness everything's going to be OK with them."

Harley has Alzheimer's disease and his wife, Shirley, recently had surgery on both eyes. This is happening at a very bad time, but there's good news. The family found a new house back in Gifford and they hope to close on it very soon.
Original: 10:03 pm, 1/12/14, Sunday
RANTOUL -- Disaster struck for the second time for one family. It happened in the 1700-block of Eater Drive around 8 Sunday morning.

They lost their home in the Gifford tornado. Sunday, they were on their way to church when they started the car and it began to smoke. Minutes later it exploded. No one was hurt.

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