PORTSMOUTH, Va. (WAVY) – Cleanup is underway after a fire at Tidewater Yacht Marina in Portsmouth.

From Drone 10 you can see a sunken boat, and next to that is Grateful, the house boat destroyed by the fire and owned by Chris Cushnan.

“A little fire on one boat,” Cushnan said. “It was a massive flame and then it transferred to our boat and like I said, if they had not removed the other boat, it really could have been disastrous for every one on this dock.”

The fire started just before 8 a.m. Sunday and on board was Cushnan, his two kids, his wife Sheila Janes and her granddaughter Luna. Along with them was a foster dog named Moose. It was Moose that woke them up.

“Chris and Anya went to walk Moose and saw there was all this smoke billowing out of our neighbor’s boat,” Sheila Janes said. “Chris came back and yelled ‘fire,’ and got all of us out of the boat.”

The boat next to theirs, the Captain’s Lady, was on fire.

“Actually the kids almost tried to go out,” Cushnan said, “because they didn’t want to pass the flames and we had to tell them to move quickly around the flames and get off the dock.”

They are thankful that nobody got hurt and they are thankful for the Paws Around Portsmouth dog fostering program from the Portsmouth Humane Society, where Moose, along with Didgie, were surrendered on July 20 — both hoping to be adopted.


“Because if we did not have him, we would not have had to walk a dog,” said Luna Janes, the boat owner’s granddaughter. “Normally, we get up about 8 for church. And if we didn’t have him we wouldn’t be able to walk him and just because of that, he basically saved our lives saying not to go in there.”

Moose was adopted through the Paws Around Ptown Program. However Didgie remains at the Portsmouth Humane Society waiting for his forever family to come pick him up.