OAK HARBOR, Wash. -- Federal investigators are on the hunt for an arsonist after Navy housing units were torched, leaving multiple families displaced.
"We've lost our home, our property, our boys and also our sense of security," says Shannon Sharland.
For a young couple married just four months ago, Shannon and Ryan Sharland are starting over before they've even begun. Everything they own and cherish is gone.
Navy officials say an arsonist torched trash cans behind a military apartment building December 26, just outside Whidbey Island Naval Air Station. The fire burned four apartments and left five families, including the Sharlands, with nowhere to live.
The Navy is increasing security and says this is one of three fires set on Navy housing communities in Oak Harbor since September.
The Sharlands weren't home when the flames broke out, but their kittens were inside and died in the fire.
"They're just so innocent and they couldn't help themselves. If we were home we could have saved ourselves and the cats, but they were on their own and they couldn't do anything," said Ryan.
These newlyweds, just 18 and 19 years old, now faces losses upwards of $20,000. A Go Fund Me account has been set up on their behalf, if anyone cares to donate to help them out. Click here to go to the site.
All five families have been relocated to base housing. Officials are asking residents to secure recycle and trash bins inside garages.
A $10,000 reward is being offered for anyone with information that leads to an arrest. Contact the NCIS tipline at 360-257-3359.