ST. LOUIS – Joy Richter a 1995 Pattonville High School grad and has lived in Hawaii for more than 20 years. Her husband is a Ritenour High School alum and works as a property manager on the islands.

On Tuesday, the place they’ve called home went up in flames, along with the rest of Lahaina, in the deadliest United States wildfire in a century.

Joy evacuated her home on Tuesday, along with her 80-year-old father-in-law and her dog. The only escape from the flames was toward the ocean.

“I couldn’t see my own hand,” Joy told FOX 2 in a phone interview. “I prayed to God, ‘Please give me a fresh breath of air.’”

As she fought for every breath through the flames, a search and rescue team was able to get to Joy. By then, she had been separated from her father-in-law and her dog due to the heavy smoke.

“My dog refused to leave my father-in-law’s side the whole time. He sat by my father-in-law,” she said. “It’s not 100% sure, but we presume that he’s (father-in-law) gone.”

Joy’s husband went back to find their dog. By then, he was only able to recognize the dog’s badly-burned body through its name tag and leash.

Joy was recently discharged after spending time in the hospital for burns, an increased heart rate, and smoke inhalation. She and her husband are now staying at a property through his employer about 15 minutes north of where the fire happened.

“Just, please, anybody I know that is in St. Louis; my husband and I are born and raised there,” Joy said. “Anything anybody can do can help. Send anything they can.”

You can donate through the American Red Cross, Hawaii Community Foundation, Maui United Way, and the Maui Food Bank.