Retired minister, business owner escapes Lexington house fire

Published: Nov. 11, 2019 at 11:37 PM EST
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A retired Lexington minister is counting his blessings after quickly escaping a fire in his home, from a second-story window.

Brewster McLeod woke up to the smell of smoke, the sound of an alarm and heat rising to the second floor of his house. He recently opened up a coffee house that employs people with special needs.

Three days later, he was left without a home, but is grateful to be alive.

A shattered stained glass window, blackened curtains and the broken piece of fence he held onto don't show the extent of the damage inside.

"It's a tough thing, all these years, high-schoolers were in my house doing baptisms in the hot tub on the back patio, but there's life again and all of that stuff can be picked up but you can't be put back together," McLeod said.

A sound asleep McLeod woke up at 2 a.m. to find smoke building under the door. He quickly ran to find rescue.

"I ran to the bathroom, I walked on the tiles and I don't have heated tiles, they were heated because the fire was right underneath it," he said.

It wasn't bed sheets he tied together.

"I pulled those velvet curtains off of the window and I threw them down because I was gonna, not hang on those, I was gonna slide down so I wouldn't rub my chest against that siding," McLeod said.

He said his instincts told him to tuck and roll and he walked away without major injuries.

As a minister, he's used to people calling out to him for help, but this situation called for the opposite. He says the community support has been humbling. Now, he'll practice receiving help after decades of helping others.