PITTSBURGH (KDKA) — Dee Lesneski looked at what’s left of her home with mixed emotions. It was the second fire in Buffalo Township, Washington County, in two days.
The last one claimed two lives.
“And we got out,” she said. “We got out. Mr. Hewitt, his wife and son wasn’t so lucky and my heart goes out to them.”
Lisa Hewitt and her 5-year-old son Timothy died in a fire Sunday night.
But the Lesneski family escaped the latest fire. They suspect it could have been a gas line. They’re waiting for official word.
“I heard a pop like glass breaking pop pop,” she said. “And I said, ‘Oh that darn cat.’ And I sat there for a little bit and I said oh I’ll get it in the morning. And then a couple seconds later I heard a big pop but it was a dull pop and I said ‘that’s not the cat’ and by the time I got up from the chair I was going to call my husband to say come and help me see what’s going on, I saw the whole front of the house was up in flames.”
“I just turned around and ran, grabbed my son Max up out of the chair, got him outside and that’s kind of a blur,” she added. “I don’t even know how I did that but my husband ran out the front, I came out the side and I took Max next door.”
It’s not the first time she’s come to the aid of her special needs son. Thirteen years ago, when she perceived his elementary school wasn’t acting in his best interest, she tied herself to a pole until the district relented.
This latest challenge leaves her with a less certain vision of the future.
“This is my parent’s farm. And we built on my parents farm. And this is the second time we had to rebuild. We lost our house to a fire in ’97. And rebuilt and…I don’t know,” she said.
But she says the family has received some immediate short-term help.
“When you have nothing, what the Red Cross gave us was a bundle,” she said. “It’s just a couple of dollars but oh my God — what it’s going to do.”