(Harrison Ark.--05/09/18) A Harrison, Ark. family is grieving the deaths of a 93-year- old World War II Veteran who perished in a house fire that reduced their home to rubble.
A 15-year-old boy is being hailed a hero after his family says he saved their life when their home caught on fire early this morning.
"My 15-year-old Jared Alexander saved us. He went to sleep on the couch instead of in his room and if he hadn’t waken us up we would’ve probably all died," explains thankful mother, Jacqueline Petty.
Jacqueline and her family are reeling after losing a loved one, two dogs, and their entire home to a fire.
"I just felt really bad cause we hadn’t gotten Bob out and I couldn’t get the dogs out and all I was thinking is we lost our house, we lost Bob, and we’ve lost our dogs and what’re we going to do now?"
She recalled the horrific scene when a fire ripped through her home, killing 93-year-old World War II Veteran Robert Routzong
"It’s a sad loss and he was a good man and he did a lot in his life for our country."
But it could have been far more tragic if not for the quick actions of Jared Alexander's bravery.
Jared tells FOX5," At first I was just panicked I was really panicked like we might die or somebody might die and the urge to get everybody out of the house fought the panic and made it to where I could get everybody to go."
The family says the frightening night has weighed heavily on the entire family, especially for Jared.
"Things happen in life and sometimes you can’t control what happens so you just have to learn to accept what happens in your life."
Jacqueline realizes her son's actions saved the family, but knows the difference a working smoke alarm would of made as well as a plan.
"Definitely make sure you have a plan and make sure you tell everybody that you love daily that you love them because you don’t know if they’re going to be there the next day," explains Jacqueline.
Fire officials say the cause of the blaze is still under investigation, but did start in Mr. Routzong's room.