Decatur firefighter Armando Fernandez emerged from a house filled with flames and smoke cradling a one-week-old black puppy in his gloved hands. “Oh thank God!” gasped neighbor Emma Pack, as firefighters rescued the last of all seven animals trapped inside a single-story home that caught fire this morning on Private Road 4435 several miles southeast of Decatur near New Fairview.
Candice Taylor was living at the home with her 11 and 16-year-old daughters. No one was home though when the fire erupted. Although Decatur, Rhome and East Wise fire departments all responded within moments, most of the home was consumed by fire and turned to ash and smoke blowing in the chill morning wind. Wise County Fire Marshal Chuck Beard surmised it would be a total loss. It was too early in the investigation to determine what caused the fire. Wise County Medics were also on hand. The fire was first reported shortly after 11 a.m. Wednesday morning. As of 1 p.m. firefighters were still fighting to prevent the flames from spreading.