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Loveland families starting from scratch after apartment fire

Loveland fire victims families
Posted at 11:44 PM, Nov 16, 2021

LOVELAND, Ohio — As the holidays approach, several Loveland families are still searching for somewhere to live after an apartment fire destroyed their homes.

Saturday morning was a nightmare for Dionna Kursim and her daughter, Karli.

"My daughter woke me up screaming, crying, 'Mom there's a fire, there's a fire,'" Kursim said. "We're all pretty much devastated, traumatized...we lost everything."

While everyone was able to get out of the building at Chapelwood Apartments safely, Kursim and her neighbor Tanya Quinn said they are starting from scratch. The two said 12 units were temporarily displaced. Their families are currently living at a hotel thanks to money from the American Red Cross, but they said they need a more permanent fix.

"The outreach of the community has been phenomenal, but it sucks," Quinn said. "It's a hotel. There's no way to cook food."

The two said they are unsure where to go next or how they will afford it. Community members set up GoFundMe pages for Kursim and Quinn, hoping to raise enough money by Thanksgiving.

"I went to work the next day," Quinn said. "I tried to keep the money coming in, but it's like there's so much to do after something like that happens. I can't do all of it."

Both women said they are also concerned with the apartment management's response, saying neither were offered a place to stay. A report from the Loveland-Symmes Fire Department said the fire started in a kitchen, with an electrical failure contributing to the cause.

Kursim said the fire started inside the wall separating her kitchen from Quinn's, and Quinn said she called emergency maintenance earlier that morning to report electrical issues after finding her fridge without power. In addition to calling, Quinn said, she filed a request in writing.

"I mean, it was ignored," Quinn said. "There was a warning sign at 4 a.m. It should have been looked into."

A representative with Chapelwood Apartments said the property is being inspected Wednesday, after which they may have more information.