A Monday afternoon fire ravaged the home of Leeann and Clayton Ahenakew on Rocky Boy's Indian Reservation, destroying the family's clothing, refrigerator, living room furniture, and all of their food, the American Red Cross said.
A member of the family apparently did not turn off a stove burner before going grocery shopping, said Terry Schend, chairman of the Red Cross Bears Paw District disaster relief committee. When the Ahenakews came home, they discovered the fire.
The family rented the home and did not have renter's insurance, he said.
"I spoke with Leeann the other day. The shock had kind of worn off," Schend added. "She said all she was able to do was cry all day."
The Red Cross will accept donations for the Ahenakews for about a week. The family expects to have a new home by then, Schend said.
The Ahenakews have already received assistance from the Red Cross in the form of vouchers, which allowed them to purchase food and clothing from local merchants.
"The only clothing they had left was on their backs," Schend said.
Call the American Red Cross at 265-5900 if you'd like to donate items to the fire victims. Contributions to the Disaster Relief Fund may be sent to the Bears Paw District, Box 1498, Havre, MT 59501.