PHOENIX (KSAZ) - A five-year-old boy is being called a hero for waking up his family, as their apartment home caught fire.
Flames were so intense, however, that James Roller's mother was not able to reach her two-year-old daughter. The mother tried to reach her daughter, Yuna Rose, but suffered serious burns in the process. The girl was later pulled out of the burning home by firefighters.
The mother and the daughter both suffered burns to about 40% of their bodies, and are both in critical condition at the hospital. Doctors said the girl is expected to survive, but the mother's burns are worse, and she has a longer road to recovery.
"She's going to be OK," said James, talking about her baby sister. "She's going to stay here all day long."
Family members said James heard several popping noises in the main room, and notice a fire has sparked. James then woke up his sleeping mother, but by the time she realized what was going on, flames had already spread, and blocked the front door.
"The couch exploded and threw her against the wall, so she started breaking the windows," said Laurie Young. "She was just so scared because she couldn't save her baby and she was just scared her baby died because all she could see was flames everywhere in her room."
Doctors said the mother suffered major burns to her entire back, arms, and face. Both James and her mother were outside of the apartment when firefighters arrived on scene. It was firefighter Billy Pierce who entered the burning bedroom to look for Yuna Rose. She was laying on a mattress on the ground.
"She wasn't moving at all," recounted Pierce. "She had no purposeful movement. As I ran out of the house, I felt her take one breath. I was relieved somewhat at that point to know she was still alive and still had a chance."
Yuna Rose's burns is mostly on the lower half of her body.
The family lost everything in the fire, and both Yuna Rose and her mother are scheduled to have more surgeries. Both are expected to be in the hospital for several more weeks.
The family has set up a GoFundMe page. To learn more, click here.