73-year-old church volunteer killed in Phoenix house explosion
PHOENIX (KSAZ/AP) - Phoenix Police have released new details about a house explosion in Phoenix Thursday morning.
Police say the explosion that left one dead and two injured took another tragic twist. The victim was 73-year-old Anita Johnson, a charity volunteer helping to deliver a new stove to the family in the house.
Jenny Quezada is a family friend of the 67-year-old grandmother and her three young grandkids who lived at the house. She says the family is overwhelmed by the community support after they lost everything, but the victim is their greatest concern.
"She keeps asking how Anita's family is, and it just shows the heart she has," Quezada said.
Ruben Gonzales, owner of the 11th Monk3y, near where the explosion happened, has set up a GoFundMe that's already raised thousands of dollars.
"We set it up last night at about 8 o'clock and when we came in this morning, it was just under 7 grand, which is phenomenal. The amount of community outreach has been amazing for them," Gonzales said.
"It's encouraging to see everyone coming together, meeting new friends unfortunately through this means, but you can see the genuine care for this family," Quezada said.
Thursday's explosion leveled the home and started a gas-fueled fire that damaged nearby residences in the neighborhood just west of downtown.
The two workers were seriously injured but are expected to survive. The men working for Spencer's TV & Appliance weren't identified, but they were 57 and 23 years old.
The cause of the explosion hasn't been determined.