A family loses both their house and son in a fire


SMITHSBURG, Md. ( WDVM ) — On the morning of July 9, 2020, the home of  Art and Theresa Bachtell was destroyed by a fire that started by a candle, but the main loss the couple endured was their eldest son Jason who died in the fire trying to save their family pet.

The couple said everything happened so quickly. One minute they were asleep then suddenly their house was going up in flames.

The Bachtell’s explain that they quickly ran outside of their home, but they noticed they could not locate their eldest son Jason.

After the fire was put out, their son’s body was found near the porch. Jason was steps away from making it outside.

” I think he was taking too much time and then he realized he had nowhere else to go, just out towards where the fire was, so he tried but he couldn’t make it out though,” said Theresa.

Once community members heard about the tragedy many people began to help, Including Misty Meadows Creamery.

The owners of the farm started a fundraiser for the family by allowing people to come to their sunflower field and pick anything they wanted, as long as they make a donation to the Bachtell family.

” It’s nice to help someone close by. This is certainly a tragic circumstance, and I’m thankful our customers are donating,” said David Herbst, Owner of Misty Meadows Farm Creamery.

The home was a gift from Teresa’s father, so there was no mortgage on the property. The couple said they wanted to apply for homeowners insurance, but they were required to cut down a large tree in the yard first, however, they lost the home before having a chance to add the insurance.

” We are thankful for the people who have tried to help get us through this hard time, but it’s always going to be painful every day,” said Art.

If you would like to help the family, you can go to any Fulton Bank and make a donation.

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