Chris Roberts, an assistant chief at the Jacksonville Fire Department, said firefighters today were still determining what caused the fire early Sunday morning at a home on Eighth Street and 11th Avenue.
Roberts said he doesn’t believe the cause of the fire was suspicious.
Jacksonville police Chief Tommy Thompson said the house belonged to Dale Edwards, a Jacksonville police officer.
Thompson said the Edwardses were on vacation visiting family in another state when their house burned.
The family returned to Jacksonville Sunday night, Thompson said, and they are staying with Edwards’ parents.
“I’m sorry it happened, but I’m sure glad he’s alive,” Thompson said.
The chief said the family was in need of baby clothes for their 5-month-old son. The baby wears 9-12 month sized clothing, he said.
The officer’s uniforms and bulletproof vest were destroyed by the blaze, according to Thompson. Two of the family’s vehicles were damaged beyond repair, Thompson said. He noted the family had the car they took on vacation and enough clothes to last one week.
Thompson said he saw Edwards this morning and described him as in “pretty good spirits.”
“He said he was glad they were gone,” the chief said.
Several people went to the Jacksonville Police Department today, Thompson said, to drop off clothes and make donations. The chief asked that any monetary donations be placed in an envelope and mailed to or dropped off at 116 Ladiga St. in Jacksonville.