After losing their home to a fire New Year’s Eve, a Lake City, Florida, family finds racial slurs and pro-Trump graffiti spray painted on the charred remains when they returned to try to salvage some belongings.
Army veteran Joanne Perkins lost her home after her son inadvertently left the oven on before the family left the house that day. The fire claimed most their belongings, but what happen after was what hurt Perkins the most. She went back to the residence Monday to salvage what she could and found the n-word spray painted on the back of the house and “Trump 17” spray painted on the side.
During an exclusive interview with Action News Jax, Perkins said she is weary, but she will continue to fight and protect her family. “Yeah, I’m tired. I am,” she says. “But nothing in me is going to allow me to give up.”
She did, however, acknowledge that telling her 6-year-old stepson, who is currently in the hospital battling leukemia, will be extremely difficult.
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“How do I explain that to a 6-year-old whose only wish is he wants to come home? How do I explain that to him?” Perkins says. “I won’t let the girls come back here because I don’t want them to see. This is 2017. It doesn’t make any sense. I don’t understand it.”
Despite all the damage, her Christmas tree remained intact, with the decorations and an angel ornament from her 6-year-old still on top.
The Red Cross has provided hotel accommodations for the family for a week, but after that, Perkins doesn’t know what she’s going to do. She has set up a page to raise money for a new home and has asked anyone able to please donate.