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House fire wipes out 'a thousand hugs' for victim

7:17 PM, Dec 31, 2012   |    comments
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Michelle Mead called 911 after her son smelled smoke. She was transported to a local hospital with a hip injury.

The fire, which started around 4 a.m. Sunday, brought firefighters to the 1000 block of Village Drive. Heavy smoke combined with stream produced from the frigid temperatures made it difficult for crews to find the trapped parties. A frozen fire hydrant and other frozen fire equipment presented even more trouble to crews.

Her husband Jean-Michel, who was trapped on an upper balcony, had to yell and make loud noises to alert firefighters to his location. As they searched for him, he was able to jump on a ladder put up by rescuers.

On Monday, Jean-Michel searched the house for any sign of the cats he says lived inside. Firefighters were able to save one of them.

"Everywhere I look are a thousand hugs, a thousand I love yous, a thousand kisses on the foreheads and good nights; they're all gone now," Mead said.

Red Cross officials have been assisting the Mead family. The Meads are staying at a hotel. A fund has been set up to help them.

(KUSA-TV © 2012 Multimedia Holdings Corporation)

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