Family with disabled teen escapes house fire by climbing out of a window

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ST. LOUIS, MO (KTVI) - There were frightening and dramatic moments overnight at a house fire in North County.
A disabled teen was rescued from the home with the help of two alert neighbors.

"The mom was in the window yelling for help, waiving her hands and yelling for help, and she was yelling help me, help me, my baby, my house is on fire," explained one of those neighbors LaMarr Wilkes about his neighbor Tracy Collins.

Tracy`s house on Edgefield Drive off New Halls Ferry was on fire a little after 1am. Tracy lived there with her two daughters—one, 17 year old Kaycee, is disabledand wheelchair bound. Tracy did not want to speak on camera but talked with us off camera about what happened. She says her smoke alarm woke her up. Kaycee was sleeping in the next room. Tracy couldn`t get Kaycee out the front door because of the fire. So she climbed out Kaycee`s window to get help.

LaMarr came running- so did his cousin Kendall Wilkes who lives a couple of doors down. The two used a chair to climb into Kaycee`s window. Tracy was already back inside with her daughter. Then came the rescue.

"We used the blankets, wrapped her up real good and I kind of got her from the bottom, lifted her up to the edge of the window with my cousin on one side and the county officer was out the window to receive the little girl," said LaMarr Wilkes.

Kendall explained that he was afraid the house was going to explode, telling us, "I`m thinking the gas and fire don`t mix. So then what`s going through my mind is blowing up- I was like let`s go, let`s go, we got to move fast."

LaMarr and Kendall say the county police officer got there just as they were getting Kaycee out.
Investigators believe the fire started from a problem with this electrical outlet in the living room.
Fortunately, everyone got out OK.

LaMarr and Kendall don`t feel like heroes. "I wish someone would do that for me. That`s flat out. That`s what we need to start doing... helping," said LaMarr.

Kendall added, "I just thank god that he had me at the right place at the right time."

Crews from the metro north fire protection district were the first on the scene. They commend the quick actions of LaMarr and Kendall. Tracy`s other daughter was not home when the fire started.

Tracy put a towel at the bottom of the door to Kaycee`s room to try and keep the smoke out.
That might have paid off because Kaycee`s room was virtually untouched by the flames.

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