Fire Disaster Survival, One BCCHS Student’s Story

Desiree Hernandez, News Editor

Fire can be our friend. It can keep us warm, be our light when the power goes out, and cook our food when having a BBQ. It can basically help us in many ways. Yet it can also be our worst enemy; fire can cause a disaster and in many cases, it can cause death. Samantha Martinez (12) from BCCHS has shared her father’s experience of how he escaped the fire near their home.

“I wasn’t there when the fire happened,” Martinez said. “I was at my mother’s place because my parents are separated. So it all happened around 4 in the morning and my neighbor, Anthony, grabbed some pans and started to clap them together to put the fire out. Then, he started yelling my father’s name. ‘Raul! Raul wake up!’ He yelled, but my dad didn’t respond and he noticed that the fire was close to our gate. Our dogs started barking and that’s when my dad woke up. So my dad opened the curtains and saw the fire. From so much panic and fear, my dad didn’t pack any clothing. He told me that his first instinct was that he opened the sliding door from our backyard to get our dogs, because the fire was close to them so he saved them first.”

She is relieved that her dogs are fine today, and in addition, the fire didn’t burn her house down, it only burned down her gates. Samantha later said that her father wasn’t alone and while the fire was happening, his girlfriend was in the middle of the house getting the family cat. “She was trying to save it but it scratched her and she had no choice but to leave the house.” This made Samantha very upset because she grew up with the cat. The family later found it alive and Samantha was relieved because of  the good news. Martinez stated that she’s not mad at her father’s girlfriend because she understands how fast the fire was moving.

She then related that she’s very thankful that her house didn’t burn down but her neighbor Anthony’s house did. He was safe and unharmed, but he had no place to stay and Samantha’s family took him in for a few days until he found a place to stay.

Martinez said that after the incident, she came to school crying because so many memories came to her and she grew up in that house. Till this day it haunts her, the flashback of her dad calling her and crying about leaving her cat behind and a high chance of their house burning down was the most fearful thing she has ever experienced. But everyone is fine now, and she is very grateful that no one is hurt.

This is her strongest advice to those who lost their homes or if they ever do go through it, she knows you can get through it. If she can make it and move forward, then you can too. “I’ll tell them that everything will be fine and I’ll try my best to donate because I would really appreciate it too if an anonymous person did the same for me. But even so, everything will be fine and life will continue the way it is, and it’s up to us to make the decision ourselves –if we want such a horrible incident to haunt us and make the past stay with us or to put the past behind us, the way it should be, and be happy,” stated Martinez proudly and meaningfully.