Thomasville Times Enterprise

March 10, 2014

Boy dies in Meigs house fire

Patti Dozier

THOMASVILLE — A nine-year-old boy with an “electrifying smile” died in a Meigs house fire early Sunday.

The body of Jaboris Copeland, a fourth-grader at Cross Creek Elementary School, was found in a bedroom of the Palmer Road brick dwelling.

Bars were on windows and two doors of the house, said Chris Jones, Thomas County fire chief.

Two other children and two adults escaped from the burning house.

One of the adults, the boy’s grandmother, Queen Copeland, was transported to Archbold Memorial Hospital for treatment. Jones said the woman was treated and released.

A state fire marshal is investigating the blaze. The cause of the fire has not been determined.

In addition to his electrifying smile, said the boy’s homeroom teacher, Kari Holm, Jaboris was fun, playful and mischievous. A tearful Holm said she will remember the child’s smile more than anything else.

Jaboris’ classmates’ parents were contacted by the school system Sunday and told about the death. Parents will have an opportunity to discuss the death with their children before the youngsters return to class Monday, said Dr. Dusty Kornegay, Thomas County School System superintendent.

Counselors will be available at the school Monday to assist students who need someone to talk to about the death.

The boy’s mother, Thomasina Hobbs, is a school system employee. She is a paraprofessional at Hand-in-Hand Primary School.

“This is truly a tragic situation, and our thoughts and prayers are with the family,” said Kornegay, who visited the boy’s mother Sunday afternoon.