Tanisha Daye and her sister, Tieshia, spent Sunday afternoon and evening putting the finishing touches on their rental home in order to have the power turned on sometime this week.
Early Monday morning, Tieshia said she got a phone call from a man who lives across the street from the Fourth Street home. She didn’t hear the call and, a little while later, when checking her voicemail, she found out that the home was on fire.
The sisters arrived to find one side of the house gutted and most of their belongings reduced to rubble.
“We don’t have anything but the clothes we’re wearing. Everything we own is gone, all the kids stuff, everything,” Tanisha said.
She said she, her sister and her sister’s four children, ranging in age from 4 to 11, were at the house Sunday. “We were cleaning it up,” she said. They were working to get the house ready to move into in the next few days.
The sisters’ mother, Tina Daye, had lived at the house previously, but had moved out a while before.
Tieshia Daye said they’d had problems with theft since they began efforts to move into the house just recently. A lawn mower, generator and even their dog house had been stolen.
As they looked over the damage Monday morning, they discovered the bikes belonging to Tanisha’s children had been stolen from a storage building beside the house.
Fire and police officials are investigating the blaze.
Statesville Assistant Fire Marshal Maury Jenkins said the investigation is still under way, but it’s likely the fire was set.
“The house didn’t have any power to it,” he said, which rules out an electrical cause.
Jenkins said one side of the house is gutted and the rest sustained heat damage.
Statesville Police Chief Tom Anderson said his department is also investigating the fire. Investigator Kelly Wilson is assigned to the case.
The Daye sisters said they aren’t sure what their next move will be. They said they are still trying to sift through what remains of their belongings. “All of my memories are gone,” Tieshia Daye said.
Anyone wishing to help the Daye sisters and Tanisha’s four children can drop off donations to 564 Broadway Court or call Tanisha at 704-726-6402. Her children, three girls, are ages 11, 7, and 6, and her son is 4.