Ash to ashes, dust to dust.

My neighbor and her maid, burnt beyond recognition when their house got incinirated in Washington DC. Accidents investigators determined that the cause of fire resulted from the faulty electric stove.

It was hard to believe that Mrs Jones had passed on. She was more than a neighbor to me, but a pal. During 1950‘s racial segregation in USA, were used to discriminate African-American people.

“White only.” Was a term used to keep African-American people at bay from the white only infrastructures, such as toilets, hospitals, schools even the graveyards.

Mrs. Jones was living with her maid: Anna. Anna was an african-american person. Mrs. Jones’s husband died five years ago from cancer. They had four children, they all got married and started their own families.

It was on the 3rd November 1950, at 13h:00 am to be precise when their house gutted by fire. I peeped through the window of my bedroom, furious blaze of furnace had already engulfed the whole house.

I came out of my house shocked, I shouted for help among our neighbours. We all converged at the scene. We watched the house torched into ashes.

They could not came out, both of them died. Throngs of people waited outside looked saddened until the sun came out in the morning.

Fire brigade manage to kill the fire. Police, forensic and investigators came at the scene as well. They noticed a cat stood by the body ash remains. They tried to catch it, but it ran away.

That cat was a baby for Mrs. Jones, she would love it. Jones family arranged a funeral on the same day. They had some difficulties to identify Mrs. Jones remains from her maid: Anna because they were both burnt into ashes.

Jones family took more whitish body remains and burried Mrs. Jones at the white community grave yards. Anna’s family as well took Anna’s remain to give her a decent funeral at the African-American graveyards.

On the Sunday afternoon, a certain member of Jones family was passing by the African-American graveyards when he noticed a cat that belonged to Mrs Jones resting on Anna’s tombstone.

Compiled by the Aquifers.

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