Morales family loses everything in house fire

Jennifer Lee Preyss By Jennifer Lee Preyss

June 6, 2011 at 1:06 a.m.

The roof over the kitchen was ripped open when a fire quickly spread through the home of Nicole and Jeremy Vickery, early Monday morning.

The roof over the kitchen was ripped open when a fire quickly spread through the home of Nicole and Jeremy Vickery, early Monday morning.

It was supposed to be a night like any other.

Nicole Vickery was working the late shift at Triumph Healthcare in Victoria; her husband Jeremy was at home sleeping, preparing for an early morning workday at the Ganado nursing home.

Their two young children, Draven and Mason, were sleeping over at Grandma Vickery's house next door.

But in less than an hour in the early morning hours of Monday, the family lost everything in a house fire.

"I heard a crash and it woke me up," 35-year-old Jeremy Vickery said describing the front of his Morales home catching fire. "I sat up and couldn't breathe. I rolled out of bed and tried to go out the door, but it was super hot. I ran to the window and pushed the air conditioning unit out the window and jumped out."

Jeremy Vickery was alone in the house when it caught fire about 2 a.m. Monday. He managed to escape without serious injury before running next door to his sister Samantha Boyce's mobile home and banging on her window in a panic.

"He came over and knocked on my window and yelled, 'The house is on fire, call 911,'" Boyce said. "I called 911 and then we sat out here and watched the house burn. I mean, what else could we do?"

Jeremy Vickery and Boyce grew up in the three-bedroom, single family home, they said. The family moved in 33 years ago, and someone in the family has occupied the home ever since. The cause of the fire is not yet known, but the Vickery family suspects it may have ignited near the front of the home, possibly because of an electrical malfunction. Children's books and toys were thrown out of the windows and a car on the side of the home burned bumper to bumper. Nothing inside the structure survived, including a pet snake and several pet mice.

Edna and Ganado firefighters responded to the scene within minutes of the emergency call, but the fire moved through the home too quickly, before it, or anything inside could be salvaged.

"I just kept praying that some of the kid's stuff would be OK. It wasn't," Nicole Vickery, 28, said, wiping tears away from her face, glancing at 8-year-old Draven and 5-year-old Mason.

The American Red Cross Crossroads Chapter was able to donate a hotel room to the family for three days and provide emergency food and clothing money.

But Nicole and Jeremy Vickery requests toy and clothing donations for their boys if possible.

The Vickery's will be staying with family until other accommodations can be made. The home did not have insurance, Nicole Vickery said.

"I'm just so thankful no one was hurt," she said. "I guess that's a positive."



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