One week later, family returns to home devastated by fire: “I thank God we made it out alive”

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MILWAUKEE -- Left without almost everything they own, a Milwaukee family is struggling to recover after a devastating fire destroyed their home and sent an adult and a child to the hospital. The fire happened on January 2nd, and just over one week later, FOX6 News was there as they mustered up the courage to return to their home to search for whatever is left.

Virginia Colon

Virginia Colon

"I thank God we made it out alive," Virginia Colon said.

A raging inferno tore through Colon's home near 18th and Mitchell on January 2nd.

"We lost our family pet," Colon said.

They returned to that home just over a week after the fire, and Colon couldn't help but relive the terrifying moments.

Fire at home near 18th & Mitchell

Fire at home near 18th & Mitchell

"My son came and broke the side window from the dining room and he just started screaming," Colon said.

Fire at home near 18th & Mitchell

Fire at home near 18th & Mitchell

He was trying to find an exit after a fire broke out in his room.

"He had the heater close to him and the bed caught on fire. He started hitting it with his feet and burned his feet, burned his hands. He jumped out the window and ran around and tried to save us," Colon said.

They grabbed grandchildren and did all they could to ensure everyone could get out safely.

"My son, as he punched the in window, he severed the artery from his hand," Colon said.

Fire at home near 18th & Mitchell

Fire at home near 18th & Mitchell

As they stood outside their home on Sunday, January 10th they began to realize the extent of the devastation.

"Everything from upstairs is gone," Colon said. "This was our home. We loved it so much."

Fire at home near 18th & Mitchell

Fire at home near 18th & Mitchell

Colon says she also formed bonds with others in the neighborhood.

"I'm the kind of person that when people come to my door and they say 'I don`t have food' I go in my kitchen and I pack bags for them. I was always giving," Colon said.

Now, Colon is the one who needs help.

Fire at home near 18th & Mitchell

Fire at home near 18th & Mitchell

"I know it`s going to take a long time for us to physically and mentally get back," Colon said.

Colon says she's hopeful she and her family will recover from this tragedy.

"I`m a giver. I always say 'God gives and God takes' -- and I always say 'thank you God if I have and thank
you God if I don`t have,'" Colon said.

Colon moved to Milwaukee from the Chicago area with her husband, who recently passed away. She has very little family support in the area.

Folks with a furniture store were kind enough to donate two mattresses for the family to sleep on.

Colon and her family are staying with a friend temporarily.