‘It’s so hard’: Family recovering after home explosion

Muskegon County

EGLESTON TOWNSHIP, Mich. (WOOD) — Life is starting to come together for a family whose Ravenna-area home exploded in November.

The family, who is healing from trauma and home is still in pieces, shared their story for the first time with News 8 on Saturday.

The only two people inside the home when the explosion happened were homeowner Brandon Stock and his 17-year-old son Riley

“My dad called me, and he was like ‘will you help me come put the dryer back?’ and so I got home, and we hooked the dryer,” Riley said.  “The next thing we know, my whole house was just on top of me.”

Surveillance video shows the moment the house exploded

“(From the video) It looks like the walls blew out and the roof just came down, and that’s what was on top of us,” Brandon said.

Brandon said he and Riley were in the basement trying to get the pilot light going when everything blew. 

Somehow, their dog managed to escape. But Brandon and Riley were trapped beneath the rubble. 

“I accepted that I was going to die or that I was dead and then 30 seconds later, I heard a voice in my head that said ‘No, you got to keep moving,’” Riley said. “I was completely buried alive, and then I wasn’t buried alive anymore. All of a sudden, I can get out, and I was climbing my way out towards the light.”

Once out, Riley began to search for his dad frantically. 

“All of the sudden, his hand got through (the rubble), and I was like trying to pull him out, but I couldn’t,” Riley said.  

A nearby family member managed to pull Brandon from the wreckage. 

Both burned and seriously injured, the father and son spent more than a week in the hospital. 

A courtesy of photo Brandon and Riley Stock in the hospital after their Muskegon County home exploded.
A courtesy of photo Brandon and Riley Stock in the hospital after their Muskegon County home exploded.

From the outside, it seems most of their wounds have healed. But inside it’s hard to forget the trauma of the blast. 

Although the rest of the family wasn’t home when it happened, the aftermath has taken a toll on the whole family, including their daughter, who was eight-months pregnant at the time. 

“It’s so hard on everybody to deal with just this,” said Brandon’s wife, Amy.

Nearly two months and one healthy grandbaby later, the family says it’s the community’s support that has gotten them through.

“Immediately, the community just came together in a really blessed us in a huge way,” Amy said. 

On the day of the explosion, the Stocks were in the process of getting a natural gas line hooked up to their house. They also had their propane tank filled that same day. 

However, the exact cause of the explosion is still under investigation. The family said they should be able to begin the rebuilding process this month. 

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