Chuck Arthur has to get up by about 3 a.m. for work, so it's normal for him to take a nap after he gets home in the early afternoon.
If he had been napping on the afternoon of March 13, he's not sure he'd be alive today.
That's because on that date, Arthur was living in a rented row home at 38 N. Green St. in Nazareth, next door to Karla and Rich Dewey and their son, Cole. On March 13, a fire started in the Dewey's home at the end of the row, destroying it. Arthur said smoke and water ruined his furniture, television, computer, clothes and other belongings.
"I pretty much lost everything," Arthur said in a phone interview Thursday. His children, Carly, 13, Roger, 10, and Dean, 9, who live with him on weekends, lost toys, games and clothes to smoke and water damage, he said.
Arthur said he had no renter's insurance at the time. When the fire displaced him, he went to live with his girlfriend in Kunkletown.
When he found out this week that Karla Dewey had been charged with arson, Arthur was angry at the thought he might have been home asleep at the time of the 2 p.m. blaze if work hadn't kept him out later that day. He feels even angrier when he thinks about what could have happened if his kids had been there.
He was incensed that the Deweys were the beneficiaries of an outpouring of generosity from the community that included about $1,700 in gift cards and personal checks, as well as toys, furniture, clothes and other donations.
He said he was at the Holy Family Club in Nazareth one night after the fire when a 50-50 raffle was being held to benefit the Deweys. "It bothered me, all this fundraising that was done for her," he said.
Ben Miller, an Upper Nazareth Township resident who helped organize the donation drive for the Deweys, reacted Tuesday to the news of Karla Dewey's arrest, saying it felt "like a slap in the face to me and the entire Nazareth community."
Miller responded to comments Chuck Arthur made on Patch about Arthur's resentment at all the donations to the Deweys while he was a victim of the fire and received no aid. Miller said in his response that he hadn't realized Arthur was in need and that he also would have helped him if he had known.
Miller said he had been trying to help people in need and had been under the impression from police and fire officials that only the Deweys lost everything.
Rich Dewey, a volunteer firefighter with the Upper Nazareth Fire Department, said earlier this week that he was "blindsided" by his wife's arrest.