CHARLOTTE, N.C. — Stanley Carter has lived in his Villa Heights home on Yadkin Avenue for 33 years, which caught on fire on Labor Day.
"When I saw my house on fire,” Carter said. “I still didn't believe it, and I still don't believe it."
He wasn’t home at the time.
"The police called me on my phone, and I said I'll be there in 10 minutes," Carter told Channel 9.
He watched it burn with his family and neighbors, including Chantelle Morales.
She said she first heard a loud popping noise then looked out her bathroom window.
"I just saw his house in flames and immediately started yelling," Morales said. "I was petrified that he was home but very happy he wasn't."
"When things happen, you need people around you to be neighbors and I got one. I've got a couple," Stanley said.
Stanley lost everything and couldn't afford home insurance.
He hopes to rebuild in the Villa Heights community he loves.
"It's been a lot of changes and there's only a few that are still here," Stanley said. "It could be a little house. It could be a shack, but I still want to be here."
His neighbors are giving what they can and planning a fundraiser to make sure that happens.
"I think you have to be an advocate for the neighborhood and advocate for the people who paved the way," Morales said.
Carter's family set up a GoFundMe page to help him out.
A local coffee shop, the Hobbyist, offered to host a fundraiser for Carter.
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