HANCOCK COUNTY, MS (WLOX) - A Hancock County family is homeless after a fire destroyed their home on Cameron Road just off Rocky Hill Dedeaux Road. Firefighters battled the blaze into Friday morning. Everyone escaped the home unharmed, but the family is now faced with starting over.
"We went to a friend's house from church Thursday night to sleep, and I kept thinking I'm going to wake up and this will have been just a bad nightmare, but it wasn't," said Diana Boudan.
The Boudan family spent Friday morning looking for anything that could be salvaged.
"Salvaged a couple of burnt guns, burnt jewelry," said Douglas Boudan.
"I did salvage my mother's bible. As God would have it, it didn't burn," said Diana. "I had furniture and some antiques that belonged to my grandparents and great grandparents. I know now what the people of Katrina went through. All we've acquired in 31 years is just gone. My mother passed in April. I have nothing left really of hers."
The 4,000-square-foot home went up in flames quickly, but the couple, their two sons and one of the son's girlfriend all made it out of the burning house safely.
"Then, I remembered there was still my grandmother's ashes in there, and one of the dogs was still in there so I ran back in," said the couple's son, Matthew.
That decision nearly cost him his life when fire surrounding his bedroom door trapped him inside the room.
"I had to kick it open and pry it open," said Matthew.
The family knows starting over won't be easy, but they are counting their blessings they all escaped the fire with their lives.
The cause of the fire is still being investigated, but family members believe the water heater may have had something to do with it. It is located in the area where they say the fire started.
If you want to help the family get back on their feet, you can make a donation to any Hancock Bank branch in the Boudan's name.