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3 Boats Catch Fire, 2 Sink In Charlestown Marina Fire

BOSTON (CBS) – For Kate Harrison and Will Leon, the boat they call home is now a total loss and it couldn't come at a worse time with Kate seven months pregnant.

"Getting our boat ready for the baby, clearing out space, though there's not too much to begin with. We had a baby shower recently and lost all of our possessions from the baby shower," Harrison tells WBZ-TV.

Everything lost in a raging fire late Tuesday night at Constitution Marina in Charlestown that engulfed their boat and three others, causing $1 million in damage, but injuring no one.

"It's unfortunate to see it like this," said Leon. "I put in a lot of hours to make it nice and it's tough to take a loss like this."

boston fire department
A fire engulfed three boats in a Charlestown marina. (Image Credit: Boston Fire Department)

It was a harrowing escape for the boat owners as flames spread quickly. John de Vries and his wife Regina McGorray were awakened by the commotion and ran up the pier without even their shoes.

"In order to escape to safety we thought this boat was going to blow up, flames would hit our boat or hit the pier but either way we had to run past it," said McGorray.

Their boat was one of two that sank and is now just visible at the surface. It was a tough battle for firefighters as the fuel-fed fire reignited as quickly as crews could put it down.

Now it's a difficult recovery for this close community of boaters.

"They're not luxuries, people live here. It's the only home for some of us who have no place else to go," said boat owner Walter Hope.

Now for Harrison and Leon, the devastation comes at what should be a joyous time.

"Soon we'll be thinking about making a home for the baby but thinking about that feels overwhelming right now," said Harrison.

About 40-50 firefighters responded, trying to tackle the huge flames from all sides. A marine unit also responded to douse the flames from the water. Investigators are trying to determine what started the fire.

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