A House Fire

I once witnessed something that I will never forget.  Several years ago, I was at my Mom's house which is right next door to my ex husband's house.  Well, one day, while having a smoke on the patio behind my Mom's, I heard a strange crackle.  I looked towards my ex husband's house and saw flames beginning to shoot out of the air conditioner.  I immediately called 911.  They arrived very quickly, but the fire spread so quickly, it was unbelieveable.  The windows began shattering and exploding.  Large flames ate at the side of the house.  Some men came running over asking about people in the house.  I said that I was not sure, but I knew there were pets in there.  The men ran around back to the backdoor to check, but you could not go inside because the flames were too intense.

Within minutes, I happened to see my Mom running across the road towards the burning house.  She was walking back from the store and looked panicked, but from where I was I could not see what she was looking at.  I was still on the phone with 911 and she screamed for me to call them.  I yelled back that I was already on the phone with them.  I told the people on the phone (911) that I saw a figure come out of the house and it looked like the father that lived there.  Actually, it was my ex husband's older brother, but he looked so bad that I could not recognize him.

I ran up to him and he had just been on fire and it had gone out.  He was walking like an old man bent over.  He collapsed at my feet.  His shirt was burnt up where he had been on fire.  All the hair on his head was burnt off.  The skin on his feet were hanging in long sheets.  I had never known skin to do that.  The skin was hanging in long strips soaked in blood.  It was the most horrifying thing I have ever seen.

He lay at my feet and more windows began bursting.  I was afraid the explosion would harm him, so I drug him onto my Mom's porch as far away from the fire as I could.  He was not speaking and seemed to be in alot of pain.  Amazingly, I kept my cool and had my Mom get him a glass of water.  I stood there with him telling him that it was ok and that help was on the way and that they would take good care of him. He was in alot of pain and kept grabbing at his feet.  I just kept talking to him, asking questions because I was afraid he was going to go into shock.  The only thing he ever mentioned to me was that the animals were in the house.  This guy cared more about the animals being trapped than he cared about the house or himself. 

The ambulance arrived rather quickly and took him away.  He was ok basically and was lucky he did not die.  He had to have rehab for awhile to learn walking because of the damage done to his feet.  His family came over later one by one and thanked me for helping that guy.  They said he wanted to thank me too, but he was in the hospital still.  I found out later that he got injured because there were several cats and dogs that he was trying to rescue.  He tried to get them out the back door, but they panicked.  When he went to leave through the front door, a wave of fire hit him from the suction of opening the door and that is when he caught on fire.

They did manage to save some of the animals that I helped with while they were putting out the fire.  Unfortunately, not all of the animals made it.  I found it very courageous and heroic what this guy did to save his animals.  But, on the same hand, I found it very idiotic to sacrifice your own life for an animal.  But, the animal lover in me that loves my pets like family, can understand that.

For the longest time, I had nightmares of fire and of that guy.  It is still hard to get the image out of my head.  But, I am so glad that he is ok now.

haydenrules haydenrules
31-35, F
6 Responses Feb 9, 2009

What a heroic man...

Oh, man. What a story. I imagine that isn't an image you'll ever be able to remove from your head.

True true, whuttup12.

courage and stupidity are often synonyms, depending on the outcome.

I would probably too. :) some say he was an idiot for what he did, but I can understand it and find it very courageous.

I'd probably be dumb enough to go and get myself killed trying to save pets, as well.