CHESTERFIELD COUNTY, Va. -- A Chesterfield County family has lost everything, including their two dogs, after a fire tore through their house on New Year’s Eve.
Halley Nicholson and her husband went home to Colorado to visit family and friends for the holidays. Before the ball dropped, they received a phone call from the Chesterfield Fire Marshal, with a message no family wants to hear.
“I couldn’t get a hold of him, so I got a hold of our dog babysitter who had informed us of what had happened,” said Nicholson.
That’s how Halley Nicholson learned of the deaths of her two English bulldogs.
“It’s a little rough. I think we’ve lost just about everything,” said Nicholson.
Chunk and Biggie perished in the fire that destroyed their belongings and their Stone Lake Terrace home.
“Complete shock, we really didn’t know what to expect,” Nicholson explained. “We had hoped for the best but it’s a little worse than that.'
“We had Chunk. He was old cranky and gassy. And we had Biggie who was lively who was Harper’s best friend.”
Nicholson and her husband’s daughter Harper will turn two years old at the end of January. They say she doesn’t know what happened to their home or her dogs.
“I think that hurt more than losing the rest of our stuff. They are our family, they were our first babies before we had a real baby,” added Nicholson.
The Chesterfield mother knows replacing everything is going to be a big undertaking, but it's one they won't face alone.
“This feels like home now,” she said. “We’ve been brought in so many different ways and so many people and so many strangers have come to help us. Its unlike anything we have ever experienced.”
A family friend has established a GoFundMe page to help the Nicholson family with rental expenses and to replace clothes and shoes, furniture and other items lost in the fire.