Crews responded to a home on Sunnymeade Drive in Mt. Juliet where a family of eight who had lived in that home for nearly five years watched flames destroy it in just minutes.
After an investigation into what sparked the blaze Tuesday afternoon, fire officials said it was classified as undetermined. They confirmed they had ruled out arson, and they added the fire appeared to have started in the kitchen.
"My alarm company called me and was saying that the alarm was going off. I was on the way to my son's school to pick him up, and I swung by to see why my alarm was going off and my house was on fire," said Shay Kimberly, a renter.
Thankfully the family was not inside the home when it went up in flames, but family pets were, including two miniature pinchers, a bearded dragon, and two fish that did not survive.
"It's been a very devastating loss, not only my home, our pets, we have six kids, all of their stuff," said Kimberly.
That fire changed life as they once knew it, causing them to start over again from nothing.
"Especially waking up this morning, and you don't even have a tooth brush or underwear to put on," said Kimberly.
Now the family will hold on to the only thing they have left, each other.
"Leaning on each other, holding my kids tight, knowing that it could have been so much worse, and I'm just so thankful that none of us were in there," said Kimberly.
Anyone who would like to help the family can donate clothing or household items by dropping them off at the Mt. Juliet Police Department. Monetary donations can be made through a gofundme account by clicking here.
Officials in Mt. Juliet released the following information regarding clothing sizes:
- Mother: Clothing- Small; Shoes- 8
- Father: Clothing- 36W, XL; Shoes- 10.5
- Daughter 1: Clothing- 7/8; Shoes- 1
- Daughter 2: (same as Daughter 1)
- Daughter 3: Clothing- 11/13 Womens; Shoes- 7
- Daughter 4: Clothing- 12/14; Shoes- 8
- Son 1: Clothing- 4T; Shoes- 10
- Son 2: Clothing- 10/11; Shoes- 5