A firefighter works to extinguish a blaze at a home in the 18100-block of 20 Avenue Sunday. Resident James MacSporran said the roof was 'fully engulfed' (below) when his family discovered the fire.

A firefighter works to extinguish a blaze at a home in the 18100-block of 20 Avenue Sunday. Resident James MacSporran said the roof was 'fully engulfed' (below) when his family discovered the fire.

Fire claims South Surrey family’s home, but not spirit

James MacSporran says a fire that ripped through his family's home Sunday simply means 'a new chapter'

A late-morning fire that ripped through a South Surrey home Sunday may have caused extensive damage, but it didn’t extinguish the positive spirit of James MacSporran and his family.

“Just a new chapter,” MacSporran said Monday. “We’ve got really good support from our friends.

“We’re so well-taken care of, it’s amazing – we’re speechless.”

MacSporran, a glazier, was home with his wife Anick and two of their children, Kalam and Shaily, when they heard cracking sounds coming from the roof just before noon.

Stepping outside to investigate, they discovered it “was all engulfed.”

Surrey Fire Services assistant Chief Chris Keon described the blaze in the 18100-block of 20 Avenue as a second-alarm fire – triggering response by three engines, two rescue trucks and one battalion chief.

While damage to the rented four-bedroom rancher was “significant,” Keon said crews were able to put the fire out “without a lot of incident.”

“It was in the attic space and that makes it more difficult.”

Keon said it’s believed the blaze started in the fireplace. The exact cause remained under investigation at Peace Arch News press deadline, however, Keon said it is “not suspicious at all.”

MacSporran praised the quick and professional response by fire and police crews, as well as victim’s assistance personnel.

He said the family is insured – and expressed relief that the wedding dress his older daughter, Malya, is to wear in two months, was saved.

Friends and neighbours of the MacSporrans were quick to help, bringing food and clothing; they’ve even been given the use of a house in Newton, which coincidentally became available that same weekend.

“We’re already set up. I’ve got more clothes now than I had yesterday,” MacSporran said, noting the family belongs to the Jehovah’s Witnesses community.

While MacSporran said the family has everything they need, a GoFundMe page was launched Sunday in the hopes of raising $10,000 to help them get back on their feet. As of Tuesday morning, $2,200 had been donated at www.gofundme.com/macsporran-family-needs-our-help

Friend Charlene Moore described the MacSporrans as a hard-working and generous family who often host events at their home for others.

“A lot of people want to help back,” she said.

House fire