MILTON, Ga. – The Milton community is rallying around a local family after a mother and her toddler were forced to jump out a second floor window. Their family is without a home after their house was engulfed in flames and smoke Nov. 22.
The home, in the White Columns neighborhood in Milton, was completely destroyed in the fire, which was reported just before 7 a.m.
The family of nine – the parents and seven children ages 3-16 – were getting ready for the day when they spotted the flames, said Milton Fire Chief Robert Edgar.
“The daughter ran into the father’s room and said the house was on fire,” Edgar said. Flames were quickly making their way up a wall. “They were amazed at how quickly the fire had progressed and multiplied in size.”
The mother ran upstairs to grab the family’s toddler and was trapped when smoke became too thick.
Edgar said she was forced to jump from a second floor window, carrying the child. Both were taken to Grady Hospital. The child was released hours later but the mother received injuries from the fall as well as burns, Edgar said. She was discharged from the hospital Nov. 23.
The father was taken to North Fulton Hospital and treated and released that day as well.
The fire spread quickly and engulfed half the house.
When fire crews from Station 43 on Hickory Flat Road, the closest fire station, were heading toward the fire, Edgar said they could tell it was a large blaze.
“As soon as [crews] started going down Freemanville Road, they saw a heavy column of smoke,” Edgar sad. “When they got there, one side of the house was already fully involved.”
The entire Milton Fire Department – 16 members – along with 10 from Alpharetta worked to contain the fire. Because the fire was already well underway when crews arrived and all members of the family were accounted for, no firefighters tried to get into the home.
The home was completely destroyed by both smoke and water. Edgar said some personal items would be able to be recovered.
There is no cause for the fire identified yet.
The community has already begun mobilizing to help the family, which is staying in a hotel. The Milton Love Project, which aims to spread love and support throughout the community, quickly placed heart-shaped signs in the front lawn of the home. A Facebook page titled “Crain Family Updates” was started to help organize and get updates on the family, as well as help gather needed supplies – clothing, food and, most important, a temporary home. One local school, Home Sweet Homeschool in Alpharetta, has started accepting donations to help the family. Called “Operation Crain Christmas Blessings,” toys and other donations can be made.