HAVERHILL (CBS) – Stephen Clarke says his grandson is the reason his family is alive today after fire ripped through their Haverhill home early Sunday morning.
The fire broke out at a 3-story home on Phillips Street.
Eleven-year-old Tyler smelled smoke, and woke his grandparents and older sister.
“Tyler is hero not me he’s the one who woke up his grandmother and sister and got me. He said he smelled smoke and when (his sister) went into the bedroom it was in flames,” homeowner Stephen Clark said.
Stephen says around 2 a.m., Tyler woke up by the smell of smoke.
“You wouldn’t believe how proud I am. Because I wouldn’t have gotten out if (the fire) got down the hallway. I was on the third floor and there’s only one way out,” Clark said.
All four people made it out safely. Clark says it only took seconds for the fire to engulf the house.
Later in the day Sunday, family members collected whatever they could salvage, which isn’t much.
“I just want my grandkids to have a Christmas,” Clark said.
A relative set up an online fundraising page to help raise money for the children.
“Clothes, shoes everything is gone so anything helps,” cousin Samatha Meletis said.
Clarke says while he may have lost everything in this house fire, he is so thankful his family is safe. The holidays have been tough for this family over the years.
“Two years ago I lost my mother in December and my brother four years ago in December. And November 30, 10 years ago my father. So the holidays are tough,” Clark said.
Clark says an electrical fire sparked the blaze. The fire remains under investigation.