Son of couple caught in Chesapeake house explosion speaks out


CHESAPEAKE, Va. (WAVY) — 10 On Your Side is speaking with the family of the couple caught in the massive house explosion in Chesapeake. 

The woman who lived there passed away, leaving behind a long road ahead for her husband who’s recovering at the hospital.

The Berry family has been living a nightmare since their house exploded on Sunday.  Don Berry Sr. is still in the hospital.

It only takes moments for everything to change.  For the Berry family, a gas explosion destroyed his home and killed their matriarch.

MORE: Man who saved neighbor from Chesapeake gas explosion now needs help himself

“I could see the plume of smoke and I knew it was bad at that point,” said their son, Don Berry Jr..  “It was horrible, it was devastating.  You know, at a loss for words, really.”

Berry Jr. grew up in that home. His parents, Don and Fay, were inside the home when it happened.

“He said when he went to cut the stove on, the house exploded,” said Berry Jr. “That’s about it, that’s all we know right now.”

Neighbors didn’t hesitate to help.

Berry Jr. said, “That takes a brave person to witness that and to see fire and to run in through that move debris out of the way.”

Medics took Don and Fay to the hospital, along with seven other people.  Fay passed away on Tuesday.

“They kept her from burning alive and you know, it wasn’t in vain, even though the situation is what it is.  it allowed us to have at least another day with her,” Berry Jr..said. 

Now, her family must recover, without her.

“A nightmare but the amount of support and the family anything they can do,” Berry Jr. said.  “It’s been tremendous.”

Berry Jr. and his sister are doing what they can for their father — but with only his wallet, truck, and one outfit left, they’re hoping the community can help.

“Try to let him get his life back together as best as possible,” Berry Jr. said. 

You can donate money at TowneBank, fund “Blessings for Don.”  You can send donations via mail to P.O. Box 2818, Norfolk, VA 23510. 

Lawrence Pharmacy (1156 George Washington Hwy N, Chesapeake, VA 23323), Dewald’s Diner (3199 Bainbridge Blvd, Chesapeake, VA 23324), and Dellinger’s Tire and Auto (3584 Dunedin Dr, Chesapeake, VA 23321) are all collecting donations. 

Copyright 2019 Nexstar Broadcasting, Inc. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten, or redistributed.

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