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February 23. 2014 7:22PM

Neighborly help

Neighbors, friends aid Loudon family after house fire


Pastor Earl Dunbar, his wife, Marcia-Ann, and their adopted son, James, stand in front of their Route 129 home in Loudon, which was heavily damaged by fire on Feb. 14. (DAN SEUFERT PHOTO)

LOUDON — His career choice is one of helping others, so perhaps it should not be surprising that neighbors and members of the Concord-area evangelical community are coming to the aid of Pastor Earl Dunbar and his family.

Dunbar, 55, an Evangelical Covenant minister who moved from the Midwest and was pastor at the Concord Covenant Church until it closed in 2010, was not at home when a fire destroyed 80 percent of his home on Feb. 14.

His wife, Marcia-Ann, and his adopted son, James, were at home when Marcia-Ann smelled smoke from the laundry room about 1 p.m. She and James tried to put the fire out as they called 911.

Firefighters kept the house’s roof and structure intact, but inside lots of memories and lots of material things were lost. The fire was related to a dryer problem in the lower laundry room.

Monday morning, they planned to return to the home to continue going through the debris, trying to salvage what they can.

Dunbar, who has been working a daytime hourly job while working at other churches across the country on an interim basis, said the home was insured, and no one was hurt, so the material goods don’t matter. The family is now living in a Concord-area motel.

“We lost a lot of old books, that aren’t replaceable, but we’re all right” Marcia-Ann said.

“God provided,” Dunbar said.

They hope to rebuild the house, with the aid of insurance. But the insurance payments have caps, and the Dunbars can’t afford to rebuild without some aid.

The family is being helped through the crisis by members of the church, but more donations are needed, said family friend Kathryn Bristol.

Anyone wishing to help may contribute online through the East Coast Conference giving site through the Ministers Crises and Care fund. Checks sent to the office should note in the memo line that they are meant to help the Dunbars. The website is www.eastcoastconf.org/give.

dseufert@newstote.com


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