ALLENTOWN., Pa. - A family is left without a home Thursday after a devastating fire, but witnesses say it could have been much worse Had it not been for the actions of a five-year-old boy.
With many of the Christmas decorations left intact, it's hard to know the house, in the 400 block of North 4th Street in Allentown, is no longer livable due to the fire.Yolanda Audifre lives right across the street and says she saw the family when they came running out early Thursday morning.
She said "When I opened the door I saw when she came out with the kids with the two boys...the boys didn't have any shoes or or nothing because she came out rushing"
Audrifre said the father rushed to the third floor to get to one of the little girls, suffering a small burn on his head in the process. In the end the parents, and their three kids...ages 3, 5 and 8made it out safely.
Firefighters say there were no smoke detectors in the home and that the family was awoken by one of the children who said he smelled smoke.
Audrifre said it was the 5-year- old who alerted his mother. "He said he smelled like smoke so when she got up she sensed it too and that's when she went and grabbed them"
As the family waited for help to arrive, Audrifre invited them into her house. She explained, "I said 'come inside' you know, bring the kids and stuff like that and she was crying and that's when all the firemen and policemen were here and tried it turn it down"
By the time firefighters arrived, it was too late.
Audrifre lamented, "The second floor is the one that is total...the kid's gifts, she had them in a room, the kids couldn't go to school today, no uniform, nothing, no clothes, nothing...everything that belongs to the kids...gone"
The family is now being helped by the American Red Cross.
Officials say the fire seems to be accidental, but the actual cause is still under investigation.
Allentown, PA 18102