UD Students Work to Restore 300 Family Photos Damaged in a House - WBOC-TV 16, Delmarvas News Leader, FOX 21 -

UD Students Work to Restore 300 Family Photos Damaged in a House Fire

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NEWARK, Del. (AP) - Art conservation students at the University of Delaware are working to restore 300 family photos damaged in a house fire that killed an Ohio woman and her three grandsons the morning after Christmas, the school said Thursday.

The team of first-year graduate students is evaluating the 300 family photos and gently restoring them. The photos, including school portraits, Polaroids and photobooth prints, were charred and damaged by water before they were rescued by a family friend at the scene.

The Dec. 26 fire in southwest Ohio killed 60-year-old Terry Harris and her three grandsons, 14-year-old Kenyon, 11-year-old Broderick and 9-year-old Braylon. Police say the boys wanted to spend Christmas night with their grandmother so she wouldn't be alone.

The University of Delaware said in a news release the family photos came to them through a doctoral student who was a close family friend of Ricky Harris, Terry Harris' son and the father of the three boys.

Ricky Harris said in the news release that he was "pretty blown away by the fact that somebody wants to take interest and care about this tiny little family."

Harris, who lived just two doors down from his mother's house, said he ran to her home shortly after the fire broke out around 4 a.m.

"We ran down there and it was like a bad dream," he said. "You just keep thinking, surely your kids aren't in this house, your mom is not in this house. I talked to the sheriff and I just kept waiting for them to tell me they already left in an ambulance."

He said he has seen some of the photos after being restored, including some of his boys.

"Our hearts are broken. But to see those photos online and be able to scroll in and be able to see that those are our pictures - oh," he said. "That this great big place (the university) that could be doing so many other things is doing this for us, it helps."

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