When a fire broke out in Bonita Springs, Florida, Tuesday morning, local landscapers. who were working at a home across the street from the burning building did not hesitate to leap to the rescue.
Jameson Gray, 29, and Christian Valiente, 21, who work for Scott Gray Lawn Service, noticed the smoke and ran toward the burning home when they saw Kristy Phillips, 36, outside crying for help.
“She said, ‘My mother is in the the house. My mother is in the house,’” Gray told the Naples Daily News. “And (Valiente) and I just went boom, right inside the house, right through the front door of the house. He’s on his hands and knees crawling around. He’s going for the lady screaming bloody murder in the house. I grabbed the kid inside by the front door.”
Inside the house when the blaze ignited were Shirley Corrigan, 75, her granddaughter Kristy Phillips and great granddaughter, 2-year-old Kristiana, and their pet pit-bull. Corrigan’s daughter, Kimberley Phillips, was working at a 7-Eleven at the time of the fire.
“I smelled smoke coming from another room in the house …,” Kristy Phillips said. “I smelled plastic burning. I come running out of the room and the flames and the smoke hit me in the face. I grabbed my baby. I went to grab my grandma. I couldn’t find her and I couldn’t help her.”
Valiente crawled through the flames looking for Corrigan, and found the room that she was in but couldn’t get the door open. Exiting the house, he ran to bust out the woman’s window and called for her. He could hear the dog whining but heard no response.
“I was shuffling around on the floor,” he said. “I couldn’t find the dog. I was getting cut more than anything. So I just proceeded to look around a little further, and then the police officer told me to get out. He pulled me out and dragged me out and told me we had to leave.”
The Naples Daily News reported that firefighters arrived at 8:47 a.m. after a call was placed at 8:42 a.m. and did a search for Corrigan, but were driven back by heavy smoke and flames according to Chief Joseph Daigle.
Corrigan died in the fire, along with the dog, Nilla. The cause of the fire is under investigation.