“We don’t know where we’re going to go,” residents devastated after apartment fire

Days after the fire at the Stratford Village Apartments, some residents are still struggling to find a place to stay

10 News reporter Alyssa Rae gives us the first look inside of the apartment complex, where a fire displaced around 100 and left one person dead

ROANOKE, Va. – Residents at Stratford Village Apartments are picking up the pieces after a fire displaced more than 100 people and left one dead.

The property manager gave 10 News a glimpse of the extensive damage. Many residents were left with nowhere to go.

“We’re scared and we’re stressing out, we don’t know where we’re going to go. We don’t really want to go to the mission or stay anywhere like that. We just want to get home. That’s all we want,” said Wanda Jones who lives there.

One wing of the complex was completely destroyed, and the rest of the units were evacuated until further notice.

The fire started in one unit at the end of the hallway on the first floor. There were visible fingerprints on the wall left by residents trying to get out and find their way through the smoke.

The Red Cross stepped up to help, putting residents in a hotel, but those funds are running out.

“It’s hard on everybody, it’s hard, some people are actually sleeping out here, or in their cars,” said resident Lisa Agee.

Investigators said the fire was accidental, but residents are frustrated with the lack of assistance from apartment management.

“They have not connected us with any resources, I’ve been the one reaching out to find places that will help them,” said Missy Spradlin, whose mother lives in the apartments.

Management told 10 News they’re limited on what they can do to help.

“Half of the rent goes to the reserve funds and the other half goes to the property to pay the bills. It’s not my money to dish out,” explained property manager Alex Fekas.

Fekas said most of the apartments will be available to return to in about two weeks, but many residents are scrambling to find out where to sleep before then.

About the Author:

Alyssa Rae grew up in Roanoke and graduated from Virginia Tech. An avid sports fan, she spent her first 8 years in TV as a sports anchor and reporter.