David Bolling and his wife, Bonnie, are temporarily quartered in the Best Western motel after their house suffered substantial fire and water and smoke damage. Photo by Stephen Igo.
WISE — More than a week ago David Bolling and his wife, Bonnie, were sitting in a waiting room of the Mountain Home Veterans Administration Hospital in Johnson City, unaware of the frantic activity going on back at their home in Wise County.
A neighbor spotted smoke roiling from a portion of the roof line of the couple’s home — a 22-year-old single-wide mobile home with considerable upgrades and additions over the years, including a brand new metal roof — and had called 911.
A relative at Wise County’s Central Dispatch tracked down David and Bonnie at the VA Hospital, so David’s appointment was quickly rescheduled, to say the least, while the couple rushed back to their home in the Bold Camp area of Wise County — about three miles from Pound — fearing the worst.
And, it was pretty bad.
“We hadn’t been in the doctor’s office 10 minutes before we got that call. If that new metal roof hadn’t been there that whole place would have been gone in 20 minutes. We hadn’t even got (the roof) all the way finished yet, like the corner pieces and end caps,” David said.
Fire inspectors believe a frayed electrical wire feeding an overhead light and small exhaust fan in the ceiling of the master bedroom was the culprit, he said. Thanks to the observant eye of their neighbor, volunteer fire departments from Pound and Wise responded quickly so most of the fire damage was contained to the bedroom area.For an expanded version of this article, please see Monday's print edition or our expanded electronic edition.