By TODD GLASSCOCK
Flames licked the afternoon sky and tufts of black smoke curled up from a house’s roof in the 100 block of S.W. 16th Street as a fire left a Mineral Wells family without a home Wednesday.
“I was at work when I got called,” said homeowner Alex Ramirez. “When I turned that corner [of Oak and 16th] it was already smoking.”
He and his wife, two daughters and eight grandchildren live in the home, but only his wife and four grandchildren were home when the fire started. All five got out of the home safe and uninjured.
The home was not insured, he said. He and his family had lived there 24 years.
“It’s got to work out some way,” he said of recovering from the fire.
The Red Cross had been called to assist the family in the aftermath of the blaze, he said.
Robert Murphy Sr., the other grandfather of the children in the Ramirez home, said the grandchildren will stay with him and his wife at their home for the night in Mineral Wells.
Emergency medical personnel were checking out one of his grandsons in an ambulance at the scene. Murphy said the boy was having some trouble breathing when he was being checked out, but was otherwise OK.
About a dozen firefighters from both the Mineral Wells Fire Department and Mineral Wells Volunteer Fire Department responded to the blaze, said Fire Chief Mike Pool.
The fire was fully involved when the first engine arrived on the scene around 2 p.m., he said. Two engines total responded and it took firefighters about an hour to contain the fire.
Debbie Youngblood, who called the fire in, said she was driving to the Bargain Barn down the street from the house when she saw smoke coming from it.