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Neighbors rush to save Phoenix couple from burning home

Posted at 5:54 PM, Jan 02, 2018
and last updated 2018-01-02 22:50:12-05

A Valley man is grateful to have a roof over his head tonight, thanking his neighbors who jumped in to help save his mobile home from burning to the ground.

David Mauricio said he didn't even realize there was a fire on his property until neighbors came banging on his walls and breaking out windows to get him and his wife out.

When he ran to the front door, Mauricio said flames were shooting several feet up into the air, and the fire was spreading fast through his front yard and the walls of his home. 

Mauricio said he tried to use an outside faucet and grab a garden hose, but the heat was too much for him. Outside he saw several neighbors, some whom he had never even met, fighting the flames with garden hoses and fire extinguishers.

Phoenix firefighters showed up within minutes and were able to help get things under control.

Mauricio said if it wasn't for the quick action of his neighbors, he knows his home would have burned to the ground. and that he and his wife may not have escaped unharmed.

"I really feel blessed about that because if it were not for the neighbors over there, maybe I would not be here. I don't know maybe this story would be very different," said Mauricio.

A construction worker and mechanic by trade, Mauricio said he moved into the quiet mobile home community off 32nd Street and Southern Avenue. He had a lot of construction debris, and tools stored in his yard, most of which is gone now.

Mauricio described his community as one where most people stayed to themselves, but in his time of crisis, he says he is overwhelmed with the response he saw from strangers.

The only big loss in the fire is the loss of a dog. Mauricio said the pet slept in his front yard, and was unable to get out of the yard. He says he is still haunted by the dog's last cries for help.

"I still have it in my head. I feel bad. This morning I was crying back there with the other dogs. It's a life you know. No matter if it's not human, but it's still a life. I heard his last moments," said Mauricio.

A Phoenix fire spokesman said the cause of the fire is still under investigation. Mauricio believes electrical problems may have sparked the flames.