Grandmother & Her Four Grandchildren Escape House Fire

By: Angela Sparkman Email
By: Angela Sparkman Email

A woman and her four grandchildren got out of their burning home alive, but they lost everything they had.

It's the second time the woman has lost her home in a fire.

The Ratliff children can't find anything left in the rubble of what used to be their home.

Tuesday night, flames ripped through the building.

“The ten year old, he came in yelling, "Mamaw, the house is on fire." Betty Ratliff said.

The fire started in the boys bedroom.

Grandmother Betty Ratliff says she tried to put it out, but couldn't. She grabbed her four grandchildren and ran.

“That was the most important thing, getting the children out, my grandchildren,” Ratliff said.

Ratliff's daughter Vanessa Wood lives two homes down. The sight of fire in her mother's, nieces, and nephews' home caused her to panic, and believes she could have died if it wasn't for her 14 year old niece.

“I didn't know anyone was out. I started to go back into the house. She told me to watch out, there was flames above my head. if it weren't for her, I probably would have gotten burned myself,” Vanessa Wood said.

The only injuries are burns to Betty's hands, but they lost all they had.

For Betty, this isn't the first time.

She says in 1989, her mother's house burned and she lost all she owned then too.

She can't believe it's happened again.

“It's very seldom it happens to two people in their lifetime, but I said maybe it was done for a purpose. Only God knows,” Ratliff said.

While all they have are the clothes on their backs, this family is glad to still have each other.

“Material things can be replaced, they can't,” Wood said.

She got back on her feet once, and vows to do it again.

Fire officials believe the fire was accidental and started in an electric outlet.

The Red Cross is helping the Ratliff family.

If you would like to help, you can contact the Red Cross at 606-886-8330.


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