Firefighters tend to a fire at a house on 7th Avenue West on Thursday afternoon.

UPDATE: Community rallies for the man who lost his home in the fire

A fire broke out in a home on 7th Avenue West in Prince Rupert on Thursday afternoon. The man who lost his home had no house insurance.



Fire crews are still on the scene where the fire broke out in a home at the end of 7th Avenue West on Thursday afternoon.

The fire was discovered at approximately 3 p.m. Lee Milnes was at work when his boss radioed him that his house was on fire and he’d better go.

“I’ve been in this house for 14 years,” Milnes said adding that he has no insurance on the home.

Milnes was surrounded by friends, who are offering support to the man after the flames consumed his home. Right away, a GoFundMe page went up for Milnes and in 18 hours nearly $4,000 had already been raised.

All of his medications have been covered and someone donated a new sleep apnea machine for him to use until he gets back on his feet. Some people brought Milnes new clothes as well.

His cat was found after the fire broke out but his dog, Keena, is still missing. The 16-year-old husky shepherd cross is of medium height and has a small white patch on her chest.

Lee Milnes' dog Keena is still missing after the fire tore through his house on Tuesday.

Lee Milnes’ dog Keena is still missing after the fire tore through his house on Tuesday. CONTRIBUTED/THE NORTHERN VIEW

The Prince Rupert fire department worked hard to put out the fire. There were two fire trucks at the scene and fire crews used three hoses.

RCMP directed traffic and kept the public back. A BC Hydro crew arrived shortly after emergency vehicles as the fire was near power lines.

Prince Rupert fire crews were busy Tuesday afternoon with the house fire on 7th Avenue West.Prince Rupert fire crews were busy Tuesday afternoon with the house fire on 7th Avenue West. SHANNON LOUGH/THE NORTHERN VIEW

When the fire first started, witnesses said they heard shots go off. Milnes is an avid hunter and has shot gun shells stored in his home.

Students from the Prince Rupert Middle School watched the fire crews hard at work.

“It’s scary,” said Grade 8 student Tyrell Haldone. “Someone kicked in the front door and asked if anyone was in there.”Students from the Prince Rupert Middle School watch the fire crew hard at work.

Students from the Prince Rupert Middle School watch the fire crew hard at work. SHANNON LOUGH/THE NORTHERN VIEW

More to come.

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