When a home catches fire, it tends to leave the whole area in distress. A house fire not only puts the neighbourhood on alert, but it makes everyone far more cautious about their own home life. However, when a fire broke out in Lucky Vista, the situation was dire. When once house caught fire, it soon carried over to the next house along and put the family inside in great danger. Two quick-thinking, heroic neighbours burst through the doors of BOTH houses.
They helped to save a family in one of the homes, and a dog that was trapped in another. The fire rapidly spread from one home to the next, creating a massive panic and leaving everyone unsure of what to do or how to stop the fire at source. Nakenya Portela-Bailey was unaware of the inferno until her neighbour, Kevin Hayes, let her know. She was in the house with her two dogs and three children.
“Thankfully, Kevin knocked on the door,” Portela-Bailey said. “Because I don’t think anyone in the house realized what was going on.”
Hayes noticed the smoke bellowing from her home, and quickly sprang into action as he parked up his car and seen the fire blazing away. “I don’t think I should be considered as a hero, I’m just a concerned citizen,” Hayes said. “I jumped out of my car and went to check on them.”
Once they got everyone out of the house safe and sound, Hayes then went next door to Julian Felan to see if the fire had spread to his house and to see how much damage was done. Ringing on the doorball – a video one – of Eliseo and Sylvia Farias’ house, they let them know that their house was ablaze as they were not home at present.
They let the men know that their dog was inside the house and, if possible, could they get inside to save him. Heroically, the two men obliged and Felan, an ex-firefighter, used his professional nous and sizeable bravery to get inside to go and help the dog.
Smashing the door down, they piled through the smoke and the flames to find the dog – which, according to Hayes, was a major part of the Farias family. Felan broke the door down and without hesitation, the two neighbors rushed through the smoke and found the Farias’ dog. “I know how they feel about their dog,” Kevin said. “It’s like their kid. I’m a pet lover too, and my dog is part of the family.”
Happily, they got the dog out of the house without a scratch and the firefighters arrived to cope with the flames and get the place back to normality in a relatively short space of time. The two were praised for their integrity and bravery, and their willingness to fly head first into danger to help animals.
Praising the community and their commitment to one another, Nakenya added: We look out for each other.”
What a fantastic story, and the testament to the power of neighbourhood love and commitment to keeping one another safe.