Mom of 4, Detroit health worker loses everything in house fire

"Home for the holidays" takes on a whole new meaning when you lose it right before Christmas.

"My daughter's birthday is Christmas Eve, so it’s like even if I did get Christmas gifts, where would they go?" said Lastar Jenkins.

Jenkins, 34, has yet to answer that question. The house she was renting on Detroit’s west side caught fire three days after Thanksgiving.

She says the lights and TV were flickering off and on, the wall felt "like lava" and then white smoke started to seep out of it.

"I ran downstairs to my kids, and from there on everything was fire from the living room to the kitchen, it already had caught," she said. "It was already coming down the hallway."

She and her four kids jumped from a window to escape the flames. They got out with their lives, but not much else.

"We lost everything. It’s kind of devastating to start all over," she said. "Memories, different things that you have."

And as much as things changed, so much remained the same.

Lastar was back at work as a contractor for the Detroit Health Department administering vaccines for COVID-19 the very next day.

"Right now due to Covid, a lot of people have lost a lot of people," she said. "So I figured there was no need for me to sit around and cry about the things I have lost, when people have been losing their lives on an everyday basis."

Lastar and her children have been living with her sister since the fire.

Her co-workers heard about what happened and are planning to adopt her kids for Christmas. Chelsea Williams is thinking they can do one better.

"Here’s the thing: I know everybody wants to do Christmas, but let’s think about the house," she said. "You know, can we even come up with a deposit - something, to at lease get them a house for Christmas.

"The biggest thing to take away from this is we have frontline heroes that are out here trying to fight against Covid and try to save lives every day, but we also have to acknowledge that we are human as well, we go through things - and that’s what this situation is."

TO DONATE: There is a GoFundMe set up to help her HERE.