GLENDALE, Ariz. - Six people are without a home after an apartment fire on Dec. 21, and the Glendale Fire Department is doing more for them than putting out the fire.
Firefighters are working to make sure this family can still celebrate Christmas after they lost everything to the fire.
The fire reportedly happened in the area of 63rd Avenue and Maryland. According to Glendale Fire Department Captain Ashley Losch, crews arrived to heavy black smoke coming from the front of the apartment.
"After an aggressive fire attack crews stopped the forward progress and kept it from spreading to the adjacent apartments," read a portion of the statement. "Unfortunately the apartment is a total loss."
Cpt. Losch said one of the six occupants of the apartment was home at the time, but that person made it out safely. Three children, including a two-month-old, and three adults live in the apartment. A total of eight people are displaced by the fire. No injuries have been reported.
Family affected speaks out
Asia Rascon and her family are still shaken up after the fire.
"Everything's gone. "Everything is gone," said Asia. "Bag of paperwork, that’s it, that’s all that was recovered."
Rascon said she was going to the store when the fire happened.
"My father-in-law calls me, as he was in the shower, and he said ‘call 911. The house is on fire. Call 911. Hurry, hurry,’" Asia recalls. "I rush back. I do a u-turn, and as I'm on right here on 75th and Glendale, I see the flames just everywhere."
Fire crews, Arizona Cardinals stepped in to help family
Even after the flames were out, the fire crews decided their job was not over just yet.
"I was looking at them, and they were both crying, and she said to me 'my toys burned up in the fire,' and it was just immediate. I have to do something," said Cpt. Losch.
Quickly, crews banded together, collecting items from their toy drive, as well as basic essentials like diapers, clothes, and cash.
"I need Barbies, and I need Hot Wheels, and we need something football and I need it now, and you know, that's what Glendale firefighters do. We serve the community not just putting out the fire, but we find solutions for the families," said Cpt. Losch.
One firefighter even donated his own child's old bassinet.
"If we can help just a little bit for them not to worry about it, that's what it's all about," said Travis Azevedo.
"Thank you. From the bottom of my heart, thank you," said Asia.
In the aftermath o the fire, Asia said her son, seven-year-old Enrique, was most upset about losing his signed Kyler Murray jersey. Enrique is a huge football fan who intends on playing with the Cardinals when he grows up. The only Christmas gift that did not burn was tickets to the Cardinals' Christmas Day game.
"It just so happened that Captain John Birch was with me that night. He is a former Cardinal player," said Cpt. Losch. "We were going to reach out to our friends in the Cardinals organization and see what we could do."
During the game, fire officials decided to surprise Enrique with a brand new jersey signed by Murray, presented by the big red himself.
‘The look in his eyes, first is just total surprise, but next, just that pure joy that we all hope we can deliver," said Cpt. Losch. "Everything just fell in place after the fire. The right people were there at the right time, and that just meant so much to me."
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