BEEKMANTOWN - When Robbie Miller, and Carol and Abby Leggett lost all their belongings in a house fire Oct. 15, plans began to take shape to help them replace some of what they lost.
The fire happened at the family's rented home on Spellman Road in Beekmantown some time around 3 p.m. Abby, who turned 14 that day, was the one to find the fire.
"She came home from school, went into the house and could smell smoke," explained Carol. "She called her dad and she called 9-1-1, got the dog and got out."
Abby's dog, Ebby, then ran back into the house and into Robbie and Carol's bedroom, where the fire began.
"I think she might have been looking for the rest of us or going to a safe place," said Carol.
Abby then ran back into the house, was able to save Ebby and make it to safety. However, she did lose three rabbits and two Guinea pigs.
"Abby's a 4-Her," Carol explained. "Two of the Guinea pigs she's had every year that she's been at the fair showing dairy cattle, they've been with her in the barn."
"She was very upset about that," she added. "At this point, she doesn't like to talk about it too much."
Aside from a box of photos, the family was unable to recover most of their possessions, and did have renter's insurance to help replace some of their belongings.
"We all lost all our clothes, everything," said Carol. "Everything we had in that house ... and I think we had lived there for I think 15 years."
Despite that, Carol considers Abby to be a hero.
"They couldn't save the house, but she made the best attempt she could. She did what she was supposed to do," she explained.
Within 24 hours after losing their home, the owners of the farm Robbie works for, Cha-Liz Farms in West Chazy, offered the family a home to live in on the farm. That kindness is something Carol noticed from many community members.
"[The school has] been very supportive," Carol said, referring to Seton Catholic School where Abby is a freshman. "The outpouring of family and friends has been unbelievable. It leaves me speechless, it really does."
One friend who is helping the family is Heather Charland, whose son, James Sayah, is a friend of Abby from when she attended Beekmantown Central School.
Charland explained when she heard about the fire her son suggested they do something to help the family. So, she got together with Robbie's mother, Debbie Miller, and began planning a benefit.
The event will take place at the Rainbow Wedding and Banquet Hall, 47 Woods Falls Road, Altona, Sunday, Nov. 14, from 11 a.m. to 4 p.m. There will be music, as well as an all-you-can-eat spaghetti dinner, and raffles and a Chinese auction. Tickets are $10 for adults, $5 for children age 6 to 10, and free for those age 5 and younger. They can be purchased at L & M Convenience Store, Sandi's Kountry Kitchen, and Dragoon's Farm Equipment, in Mooers; Cindy's Country Store in Mooers Forks; Giroux Bros. Equipment in Plattsburgh; or by calling Charland at 335-2338.