A Memphis couple on vacation in Gatlinburg, Tennessee, are missing and their three children are injured after wildfires swept through the area on Monday.
Jon Summers, an architect, and his wife, Janet, both 61, haven’t been found, and their three sons — Branson, 23, and twins Wesley and Jared, 22 — have been hospitalized after being caught in the fire, according to USA Today.
“The boys are doing much better. That’s great news,” Steve Berger, president of the architectural firm that employs the father, told the news outlet. “We’re very hopeful about Jon and Janet being located.”
A fundraising page has raised over $26,000 to help with the brothers’ medical expenses and injuries.
On Wednesday, the outlet reported that Mike Agee, a possible family friend, said that the family became separated as they tried to escape the fires.
“What we know is in trying to escape, the family split up once their escape route was blocked by debris in the road. The boys went one way and the parents continued down the road,” the post read.
He added, “Wesley, Branson and Jared Summers..were found unconscious in Gatlinburg in the midst of wildfires. They were on a family vacation with their parents, Jon and Janet Summers. The sons are at Vanderbilt Medical Center in the burn unit and unconscious as a result of smoke inhalation. We are trying to locate the parents who were probably injured. If anyone knows anything, please let me know.”
Another family friend, Silas Armstrong, said they’re a close-knit family and the parents had homeschooled their sons.
According to the outlet, Janet Summers initially took to Facebook to write about the fire.
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“Feels like end of times. Businesses closing, people wearing masks,” she wrote. “The fires in the North Carolina mountains are close to Gatlinburg. We are in an odd space with little visibility, ashes floating.”
Seven deaths have been confirmed after the wildfire spread throughout Great Smoky Mountains National Park.
Approximately 7,139 people across multiple counties are without power from the storms, according to the Tennessee Emergency Management Agency.