One year ago today, a fire in the Carolina Forest condo complex, Windsor Green, ripped through multiple units.
The Alewine family says when they realized their building was on fire, the only option they had to get out, was their third story balcony. Brian Alewine said he lowered his two young sons, two and ten at the time, as low as he could and then dropped them to people below.
“I didn’t know if she and I would make it out and I just remember when I dropped him, I said, “I love y’all,” Brian said.
The Alewine’s moved to the Grand Strand just six months before the fire.
The couple tells News13, even though a year has passed, they are still dealing with physical injuries. Krisha Alewine said she has been through eight ankle surgeries and has to use a wheelchair and walker as she is still in a cast.
Each member of the Alewine family suffered fractures in their back from the drop except their three-year-old son.
“It’s an everyday reminder, I can’t take a shower like a normal person does,” Krisha said.
Despite the physical issues, the couple said the hardest part of the fire, is seeing how the trauma affected their sons.
“The youngest one is scared to death of firetrucks and firemen,” Brian said. “We’re trying to teach him that they’re okay and they are the reason, they are part of the reason we’re still here.”
In January, the family filed a lawsuit against the Windsor Green Homeowners Association, the managing company of the complex and the company that leased their unit. This week, the family’s attorney, Dylan Bess, filed a motion for discovery to consolidate the Alewine’s lawsuit with others filed by people the fire affected. Bess told News13, this is in an effort to streamline the process for the courts.
Bess said the lawsuit asks for the companies to take responsibility for what he called “gross negligence”. According to the attorney, the building was not equipped with fire safety measures like sprinklers. He said the family is also seeking compensation.
“Compensate our clients for the damages they’ve suffered,” Bess said. “Whether that be physical, financial, emotional; you know right now they’ve got somewhere between $500,000 and $1,000,000 in medical bills.”