It was a hot and sunny Monday afternoon at the Sedona Square Apartments in Houston, Texas. Dayanara Romero had woken up that morning and taken her children to school like she did every day. She returned home with her 3-year-old son and started on her household chores. She was on a mission to get dinner stared for when the kids came home from school later that afternoon. As she was cooking, she was startled by a loud knock on the door. When she opened the door, she saw her neighbor from upstairs screaming in panic that the apartment building was on fire.
She quickly grabbed her 3-year-old son and ran outside, when she looked up, she could not believe what she was seeing. The apartment on the corner was ingulfed in flames and it was quickly spreading to the other apartments. She noticed that no other neighbors were outside and so she quickly jumped into action.
“I sat my little boy down in a safe place away from the fire and I started running door by door knocking as loud as I could,” Romero said. “I was screaming to everyone to please get out because the apartment was on fire.”
As she knocked on the last door, she started to feel the heat from the flames stronger in her face and then she saw the fire department arrive.
“I quickly ran and grabbed my son and got out of the way so that the fire department could put out the flames,” she said.
As she stood back and watched the fire department battle the blaze, a tear rolled down her face. She said she could not help but feel anguish knowing that her life was just ripped from underneath her. Everything that she had worked so hard for was destroyed in the flames.
When she saw the Red Cross arrive it brought a smile to her face.
“I knew that we would be ok when I saw the Red Cross arrive, it was a sense of relief knowing that they were here to help us when we did not know what we were going to do next,” Romero said.
Romero was able to meet with a Red Cross caseworker who was able to give her financial assistance, one of many resources the Red Cross provides to families recovering from fires.
Like Romero the American Red Cross Texas Gulf Coast Region has assisted seven families from the apartment fires at Sedona Squares. The Sedona Squares apartment fire is just one of five multi-family apartment fires the Red Cross has responded to recently across the Houston metro.