A fire destroyed the home of a Pahrump loved ones last week, leaving it with tiny more than the pajamas they were wearing when the fire broke out.
The fire alarms in a mobile home on Oakridge Avenue went off at about 8 p.m. on Sept. 19. Shirley Shantz, her daughter Julie Shantz, her son Richard Shantz, and Julie’s fiancé Ronald Kramer, have been all in the home at the time. Also in the home have been the loved ones’s 3 dogs.
Richard had just fallen asleep in a back bedroom when the alarms sounded the other household members were in an adjacent bedroom.
“The fire alarms going off is what alerted us to it. I was asleep in the back bedroom and I didn’t even hear the fire alarm. My brother-in-law woke me up yelling “you’re on fire, you got to get out of here or you’ll die,” recalled Richard.
Kramer’s warning woke him just in time.
“When I woke up the fire was all around my bed and it was coming up the blankets,” Richard said.
He stated his very first believed was that he was the recipient of some kind of negative joke, but rapidly realized that wasn’t the case. Still disoriented, he followed his future brother-in-law to security.
“It was so hot in there when I awoke, and it was so smoky that I could hardly see. And appropriate by means of the doorway I saw flames, I would estimate probably about three-feet higher, maybe even greater, and they had been going up the sides of the walls,” mentioned Richard. “We had to dart by way of these, and it wasn’t like a thin line of fire, it was pretty thick, so we had to take a couple of measures by means of the fire.”
Richard, along with the rest of the household, is grateful for Kramer’s selfless actions.
“He had to come by means of the fire to save me and then we had to go back out through fire to get out, so it was pretty heroic, what he did,” stated Richard.
“He saved my son,” added Shirley. “He just told us to go, get out of the residence, and promised us he was going to get him.”
The fire fully destroyed the home and most of the family’s possessions. A Jeep sitting half-melted in the driveway was paid off just days ahead of the disaster.
Aside from a couple of modest burns, absolutely everyone created it out of the mobile home safely and watched helplessly as it was swallowed by the flames.
Pahrump Valley Fire Rescue Service responded to the scene, but weren’t in a position to salvage the home from the rapidly-moving fire.
“The fire, particularly after we got outside and I saw the structural damage that it was already doing to the outdoors of the building, it was just indescribable. It was terrible,” mentioned Richard. “It was very fast, you know, it nearly moved like a viper or some thing, with extreme speed. The flames had been almost certainly about 40 feet in the air,” he continued.
“We created it out of the property alright and nobody got burned actually undesirable or anything,” said Shirley, “but we’ve had some quite challenging times. I’m not performing so great. We didn’t have anything no socks, no shoes, no nothing at all. I mean, we just had to run out of the property.”
Next door neighbors, Pam and Kevin McDonald, quickly set out to aid the family members, housing Shirley and Richard on the very first evening soon after the fire. The McDonalds then started to make calls and search the Net, looking for an inexpensive home for the family members, and other ways to assist.
“We had some close friends who are really good, prominent folks here in town. Pam is a sweetheart, and her husband came over and got us and brought us more than there. She looked in the paper and found this small trailer and we’re extremely grateful for that. She’s often checking on us too, simply because she’s so worried about us,” mentioned Shirley in a shaky voice.
“We looked at this place and it was just the spot for us,” said Richard. “It was a nice trailer and the owner is a actually good guy. It’s a quiet park also. And it seems like a nice community, so we’re pretty content right here.”
But the determined neighbors didn’t stop there, says Richard.
“They named the Masons and the Shriners and got donations and they helped us out with income and clothes and footwear and socks and they helped us get into this place because we’re each on a fixed revenue and both disabled. We just didn’t have the monetary funds at that time to in fact move and they have been a excellent help. It’s just an wonderful thing that they did,” he mentioned.
When asked if there was something else they need to have, Richard responded, “Well, it was pretty cold this morning. And we have some clothes, but we don’t genuinely have much winter clothing that would be appreciated. Something, anything at all that will hold us warm,” he stated.
A week later, the household is still trying to cope with their immeasurable loss.
“It’s sort of jarring,” stated Richard. “My feelings are up and down, you know, I’ll be watching some thing on Television and it can distract me from what happened for a minute, but then at the same time my thoughts will go back to it and I’ll feel sorrow and grief and even guilt, so it’s really jarring,” he said.
Emotional distress isn’t the only side effect the family is encountering.
“We had some pretty undesirable smoke inhalation,” said Richard, noting that even a week later he still has soot coming out of his nose. He also sustained a burn on his leg, which he says is healing.
The trigger of the fire is still being investigated nevertheless, it’s been reported that the fire was began by an unattended lit cigarette.
The loved ones is nonetheless in require of easy things like toothbrushes, toothpaste, blankets, plates, and cookware.
If you would like to donate any household products, clothing or funds to this Pahrump family in require, make contact with Pam McDonald at 775-751-2922.