DETROIT (WJBK) - A total of 8 people including five children and a Detroit firefighter had to be rushed to the hospital after flames claimed an apartment building Tuesday night.
Some residents were forced to jump from the windows of the apartment complex on Glendale on the city's west side to escape the flames. Nobody was killed but everyone is facing the same tough question: what next?
The people who lived in the apartment building that burned around 11:30 Tuesday night lost everything. Sharese Johnson is one of them.
"My kids. I just gotta stay strong for my kids," she said. "All I can do is just keep moving forward. Just keep my head up."
Detroit firefighters were called to the apartment complex on the city's west side. Crystal Williams lives nearby and said she made the 911 call.
"I just seen people jumping out the windows and I just saw the smoke and I'm calling the ambulance and fire department on three phones," Williams said.
The fire started in the basement and quickly engulfed the 3-story complex. Five children escaped as well as Johnson with her young children through the lower windows.
"Literally they was in pajamas and no shoes coming outside, you know it was cold last night," Williams said.
Deante Brockman and his wife, Shaquita Clark, said they had to jump from the second floor to safety. Their two children were also able to escape. The whole family was taken to the hosptial along with a firefighter who had second-degree burns. All are expected to be okay.
"It's a blessing they got out because fire doubles itself every second," Detroit Fire Captain Christopher Dixon said.
A former tenant stopped by to get her mail on Wednesday was overwhelmed when she saw the burned up building with her belongings still inside.
"I got nothing. All of my stuff is gone. All of it," she said.
The cause of the fire is still under investigation but is thought to be electrical, possibly started by a space heater.
"When it's very, very cold, people are using additional devices for heat their homes. any space heaters should be at least 36 inches away from anything that can burn," Dixon said.
The building is now boarded up while the American Red Cross steps in to help out the displaced families.
"That' s sad. They just got their toys and I know three families that was in there that lost everything," Williams said.
The Brockman and Clark family created a GoFundMe page to help them get their lives back on track.