Two women narrowly escape Henrico house fire; Family says it’s a miracle

2 women barely escape early morning fire

HENRICO, VA (WWBT) - A photo shows flames shooting out of a home on New Market Road in Henrico early Sunday morning. Fire officials say the home is a total loss.

“We arrived on scene and found the house fully involved,” Henrico Fire Captain Billy Tucker said.

Two people were inside when the fire started. Luckily, both were able to make it out without being injured.

“I heard a banging on my back door and the lady that stays with my mom, Lana, said the house is on fire. I screamed because I didn’t know where my mom was at,” Cynthia Whitehead said.

This is not the news Whitehead wanted to wake up to. Whitehead, her sister, Valeria Vice, and 82-year-old mom live inside the home.

It's the house they were were raised in.

“The only thing they could have were the things that were on their backs. She has lost everything,” Whitehead said.

Whitehead lives next door and called 911.

These sisters say they are thankful the matriarch of their family is okay.

“We were just in shock. We got dressed and this is where we have been ever since," Vice said.

Fire Marshals were on scene combing through the damage and trying to figure out how the fire started.

“I really don’t know what happened. My mom was up, she was in her bedroom. That’s where everything started because I saw the flames coming from her bedroom and it spread fast," Whitehead said.

Happening now: Two people escape house fire in Henrico. Crews still on scene investigating. Our Eric Perry NBC12 is there with the latest.

Posted by NBC12 on Sunday, December 16, 2018

She tells me their mom suffers from Dementia.

The home and property dates back generations and was left by their great-grandfather.

“He left everything to her and when I got married she gave us the land, so we can build as a wedding gift," Whitehead said.

“Smoke detectors are essential to early notification of an emergency situation like this,” Tucker said.

Fire officials confirm there were no working smoke detectors inside the home.

It's a wake up call for those in the community.

“Make sure you have your smoke alarm and detector active. Make sure you have batteries. I’m making sure mine is checked. Things happen so fast," Whitehead said.

Henrico residents that need help getting a working smoke detector can visit henricofire.org or call 804-501-4900.

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