UW-Milwaukee fraternity steps in to restore home after fatal fire

Posted on: 2:12 pm, March 24, 2013, by , updated on: 02:22pm, March 24, 2013

MILWAUKEE (WITI) — A fire took the life of a young boy back in February, and now, a group of UW-Milwaukee students has stepped in to bring new life to this home.

Seven-year-old Miguel Quintanilla lost his life one day after he was pulled from a fire at a home near 10th and Holt in Milwaukee.

Officials say a refrigerator is to blame for sparking the flames.

The fire not only took the life of the only son of two military veterans, but also, their home.

Now, a group of UWM students — part of the Tau Kappa Epsilon fraternity, have stepped in to restore the home. Alex Sperry and his UWM brothers in the fraternity learned a relative was looking to repair damage in the home.

“We came inside to water damage, the walls were trashed, the smoke damage — you look at those things and think that is absolutely devastating to see,” Gus Lopez said.

When the group discovered this relative had planned to restore the home on his own, they offered to pitch in.

Walls have been removed and the burnt roof has been replaced. It is the first step in a remodeling project the group hopes will be complete by the end of the summer.

“We want to make this transition to this new phase of their life as seamless and as painless as possible,” Sperry said.

“Now that we’ve started this, we’ve got to see this through to completion.  It is one of those things to see it through to completion.  It wouldn’t be fair otherwise,” Lopez said.

The group says to complete the home, they are in desperate need of building supplies and volunteers. Those who would like to volunteer can contact Bob Oleszek at (414) 881-2064 or Alan Lopez at (920) 254-0657.

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