Veteran loses home at Regal Apartments after years of homelessness

Published: Jan. 26, 2023 at 7:31 PM EST
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CHARLESTON\, W.Va. (WSAZ) - Jimmy Nelson was jolted awake.

“I didn’t hear anything primarily but my fiancée came and woke me up and said ‘we have to get out of the building it is on fire’ and I’m like ‘the alarm didn’t even go off’,” said Nelson.

No alarms went off, walking outside he saw the roof of Regal Apartments up in flames with fire crews pouring water on the towering fire.

His home, this unit on the first floor meant so much more to Nelson because he has battled to get there.

“I was homeless since the Clendenin flood. Me and my fiancé, we lost everything we been battling back for somewhere to stay staying at friends houses just couldn’t get no help,” said Nelson.

Nelson said because he is a veteran monthly help with rent finally got a roof over his head nine months ago.

“I guess someone must have heard my story and they help me out they help veterans,” said Nelson. “she’s my caseworker she helped me get a place.”

The Red Cross is helping Nelson and his dog stay fed. He remembers looking up at the fire and thinking he is left with nothing once again.

“It was peace it was comfortable I could finally get some peace of mind get started with what I want to be successful at which is making music,” said Nelson. “Got to crawl before you walk and I’m just back at it again.”

Nelson has the clothes on his back and some time in a hotel room but he does not know what is next for him.

“All these families are without there is a lot of us,” said Nelson. ”Feel pain just loss I don’t want to question God but like it just makes you wonder.”

For donation efforts that help Nelson and the other residents click here.