‘We just ran;’ Family displaced by Dayton apartment fire reflects on what happened

DAYTON — More than a dozen people still cannot sleep in their beds after a fire ripped through their apartment building two days ago.

As reported on News Center 7 at 11:00, Dayton firefighters were called to the 1300 block of West Fairview Avenue on reports of an apartment fire Thursday night.

>> PHOTOS: Smoke pours from apartment fire in Dayton

Many renters were displaced because of the fire, including the Burns family.

On Saturday they went back to their apartment to save what they could, but ultimately realized they must start over.

Kierra Burns said she didn’t know anything was going on until her neighbors came and pounded on her door.

“We just ran out. Once I got my kids out, I tried to you know, bang on the units,” Burns said.

She said she didn’t realize how close the fire was until she saw her next-door neighbor’s apartment while outside.

“I ran out and I saw like big flames and her house and I’m like, oh my god, this is real,” Burns said.

Dayton Fire Department District Chief Tyler McCoy said the fire started in a kitchen of one of the units and the flames spread fast.

>>PREVIOUS COVERAGE: Fire rips through large apartment building, dozens displaced

“The fire began on the second floor and extended to the third and up to the roof. And we had the possibility of extending to the entire building because of that roof,” McCoy said.

Burns has been living in the complex for four months, and she didn’t get renters insurance.

“Definitely something I would never do again,” Burns said.

Right now, Burns said she and her two children are staying with family and laughter is one of the main things keeping her going.

“I find it easier to laugh and joke about stuff as opposed to you know, not so,” Burns said.

Burns told News Center 7 that the building owners said it would take them four to six weeks before renters can move back in.

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