MOUNT VERNON, Wash. - A fire at a mobile home in Mount Vernon on Thanksgiving morning killed a man who was staying with family friends.
One person at the home managed to wake everybody and get them out, but could not save his friend.
The fire broke out at 6:46 a.m. at 2522 Old Highway 99 South.
Surveillance video from a neighbor showed flames pouring out of the home and people running outside, including four kids ages 14, 12, 11 and 9.
The family friend, Jason Emmil, said he had to kick his way through a wall to get out.
“He went back in to get everybody else out,” said Christy Jones, who lives at the home that burned down. “I can't thank him enough for getting my kids out and saving my family.”
Emmil said he tried to save his friend, but wasn’t able to.
“Couldn’t see nothing, it was just smoke and flame. Tried to get to him, ran into a wall of fire,” Emmil said. Surveillance video also showed him using a garden hose to try and put out the fire.
“It’s devastating, it's a shock, there's nothing more. And then on top of it losing a lifelong friend, what else can you do. And being Thanksgiving,” Jones said.
The Mount Vernon Fire Department said a total of nine people were in the home when the fire broke out around 6:45 this morning.
“The first accompanying officer described the flames as being 100-200 feet,” said Assistant Chief Bryan Harris.
The flames and smoke were visible from more than a mile away.
Harris said the man who died was sleeping in a shed connected to the house and that's where the fire started. Harris said the man was using a propane and electric space heater, but the fire marshal is still investigating how the fire ignited.
“Unfortunately, we had tragedy strike this time. On this day makes it especially difficult for the community,” Harris said.
Multiple camping propane tanks stored near the home also exploded, fueling the flames
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