City Program Funds Home for Woman Whose Dallas Home Destroyed by Fire

By Randy McIlwain
|  Tuesday, Jun 18, 2013  |  Updated 5:38 PM CDT
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A Dallas home in the 1900 block of Berwick Avenie in south Oak Cliff that burned while family and neighbors said they tried and failed several times to reach 911 on July 4, 2012 has been rebuilt.

Randy McIlwain, NBC 5 News

A Dallas home in the 1900 block of Berwick Avenie in south Oak Cliff that burned while family and neighbors said they tried and failed several times to reach 911 on July 4, 2012 has been rebuilt.

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The city of Dallas has never acknowledged fault in the July 4, 2012, fire that destroyed Dora Fuller's home on 1906 Berwick Avenue in South Dallas, but the city has made her whole again.

On Tuesday, Fuller, flanked by City Councilman Dwaine Carraway, firefighters and representatives of Dallas' Housing and Community Services Department, received the keys to her new home.

The home was built with grant money through Housing and Community Services and includes a forgivable loan for Fuller who does not owe a dime for the house as long as she lives there.

Fire destroyed Fuller's home last year after she and her neighbors repeatedly called 911 for help, only to get no answer or busy signals.  The delay in reaching emergency services contributed to the home being a total loss.

When firefighters were eventually dispatched, it took them only 94 seconds to reach Fuller's home from the nearby fire station.

The devastation though did shine a light on a program that's been part of Dallas' government since the 1980's, where grant money from Housing and Community Services is used to restore or rebuild homes.

All that's needed to qualify for the program is to be 62-years-old, or disabled, and meet qualifications for income status.

Fuller was walked through the process step-by-step and was elated as she shook the keys to her house on Tuesday.

She said the new home doesn't replace the memories of the family home that had been hers for 30 years, but it's a fresh start in her old neighborhood.

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