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East Tennessee man sleeps on the street after apartment fire

Anthony Young can’t get into his apartment and doesn’t have his medication after a fire at his apartment complex.
Published: Nov. 29, 2021 at 10:20 PM EST
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KNOXVILLE, Tenn. (WVLT) - We have an update to this story. Sharon Hudson, Executive Director for the American Red Cross East Tennessee said she spoke with Raymond Young, Anthony’s brother, two times Tuesday morning. She says Anthony Young refused assistance for shelter.

We also received a statement from Knoxville’s Community Development Corporation (KCDC). The KCDC Executive Director and CEO Ben Bentley says Anthony Young was out of town for the Thanksgiving holiday, and KCDC was unable to connect with him by phone to determine his needs and how to assist.

KCDC says its staff connected with Young and his brother on Monday, and a wheelchair-accessible hotel room became available for Young starting Monday night. KCDC is also coordinating with the American Red Cross and other agencies to provide a wheelchair and transportation to the hotel and arrange for other needs.

An East Tennessee man chose to sleep on the street after there was a fire at his apartment Saturday evening.

Residents at Northgate Terrace were removed from the apartment complex after an apartment fire triggered the sprinkler system and flooded most of the building.

After visiting family over Thanksgiving, all Anthony Young has are the clothes on his back and his rolling wheelchair.

“I’ve been out all night in the cold. Freezing,” Anthony Young said.

Anthony chose to sleep on the street as he was unable to get back into his apartment.

“I called my brother,” Anthony Young said. “He came and found me and picked me up and brings me here.”

His brother, Raymond, said Anthony didn’t feel comfortable staying at a shelter because of a skin condition.

Even on Monday, a day after Northgate Terrace residents were moved to hotels, he still can’t get into his apartment.

“My wheelchair,” Anthony Young said. “My accessory to move around is not this.”

He also can’t get any of his medication as he only brought enough for his trip.

“You go out and you leave and you come back and you can’t get in,” Raymond Young said.

As of Monday, Anthony and Raymond are together but still have a lot of unanswered questions.

WVLT News gave the American Red Cross Anthony Young’s contact information.

Officials with the Knoxville Fire Department don’t have an exact amount of time it’ll take for residents to get back into the building but believe it’ll be three or four more days.

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