Phoenix vendor and family forced out of home after it catches on fire
PHOENIX (3TV/CBS 5) -- A Valley man who volunteers at the local Boys and Girls Club and a local vendor at the First Fridays downtown has to find a new place for his family to live after his townhome caught fire. Phoenix Fire told him it was a complete loss.
The fire happened Saturday afternoon at his place off 19th Avenue and Camelback Road. Flames grew right outside of Joseph Mercado’s porch at his townhome. “It was really scary. One of the scariest experiences of my life,” Mercado said.
A shed burned to the ground with tools and his kid’s bikes inside. The flames then spread toward the house. “The kids property and belongings, games, clothes all got wiped out of everything,” Mercado said. The fire even spread to their cars in the parking lot. “These were our family cars. This was my business car so what I used getting to Roosevelt Row or the workshops,” he said.
Mercado is a vendor at events like First Fridays on Roosevelt Row. He also runs his own DJ workshop program where he works with Boys and Girls clubs in the Valley. Luckily he was able to save his DJ equipment and the items he sells as a vendor. “I dragged stuff to the front, all the DJ controllers I use with the kids; I dragged it to another part of the house where I feel it could have been safer,” he said.
He believes it could have been worse if it weren’t for Phoenix Fire’s quick response. Now he, his fiancé, their two kids and four dogs are out of the home they lived in for 12 years. “We had a lot of memories here. A lot of great times and challenges, so it was really sad to leave in this way,” he said.
The cause of this fire is still under investigation, but Mercado said just a few months ago, there was a dumpster fire in the complex and a couple of other fires across the street. There is a GoFundMe up for him and his family. You can find that here.
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