Connellsville Twp. residents pour out hearts to fire victims, who earlier in day buried grandson
A Connellsville Township family first buried their 22-year-old grandson, who was the victim of a shooting, and later watched as their home was heavily damaged by fire.
Shortly after 4 p.m. Tuesday, firefighters were called to the Narrows Road home of William Little Jr. and wife Kathy — just five hours after the family attended funeral services for their grandson, William Little IV, who died from a gunshot wound last week.
Andrew Thomas Hustosky, 17, of Dunbar has been charged in the shooting. Police said Hustosky reported that the shooting was an accident, saying he didn't believe the gun was loaded. The shooting occurred on Jan. 2 at the Hustosky residence in Dunbar Township.
On Tuesday, the Little family was in the downstairs of the home when they began to smell smoke and called 911.
Connellsville Township Volunteer Fire Department Chief Joe Brooks said the home sustained fire damage on the second floor,. The first floor sustained heavy water damage.
The family is staying with relatives. William Little Jr. is a former Connellsville Township supervisor.
The cause of the fire is under investigation.
“It broke my heart,” said Misty Huffine of Connellsville, a family friend. “It's a terrible tragedy to lose family and have a house fire on the same day.”
After hearing about the fire and the death of the grandson, social media was flooded with requests to help the family.
Several family friends discussed fundraisers; however, nothing has been set up.
Connellsville Mayor Greg Lincoln said he would help in any fundraiser.
“No family should ever go through what they are going through right now,” he said. “Our community usually steps up when there is a need for help. That's what keeps the Connellsville community going strong.”
Mark Hofmann is a staff writer with Trib Total Media. He can be reached at 724-626-3539 or firstname.lastname@example.org.