SPOKANE VALLEY, Wash. - A Spokane Valley family is counting their blessings after a fire nearly destroyed their home Tuesday night. That fire could have had a tragic ending if it hadn't been for the heroism of a mom who went back into her burning home to rescue her children.
Rachelle Flatt is being called a hero for her bravery to go back inside and save her three children, but she says she was just being a mom. But she's not just a mom; she's also the wife of a firefighter.
Flatt had just put her three kids to bed and was winding down when she saw her porch had an orange glow. After realizing that it was on fire, she picked up the phone and called 9-1-1. Flatt said she grabbed a fire extinguisher but realized at that point it was too large and she needed to get her kids out of the house.
"I don't know why but I grabbed them each, one by one, and so going back for my last one was really difficult. We barely got out," she said.
Flatt says she couldn't see anything, so she felt her way around. When she got to the door, it had closed, causing her to stay extra time in the smoke filled space.
Unfortunately her 9-year-old Rottweiler didn't make it out.
Rachelle singed her ears and inhaled a large amount of smoke, but because of her brave efforts her three children are alive.
"There was no way I was not going back," she said.
Meanwhile, her husband Pete was working a shift at his fire station when he received a notification of a structure fire in progress.
"I looked at the address and it didn't really sink in right away that it was my house," he said.
Peter calls his wife a hero for saving their kids.
"A lot of firefighters work their entire career and might not get a save their entire career and she got three in last night," he said.
Rachelle said she was just doing her job.
"I'm just a mom saving my babies," she said.
The Flatt family has a place to stay but they are in need of several items like clothes and toys for the kids. If anyone would like to make a donation they can do so by sending it to:
Spokane County Fire District 8
PO BOX 30601 Spokane, Wash.