Toddler burned in house fire: 'The wall was covered in fire'

Fire started just feet away from boy's crib
Feb. 20, 2013 @ 08:15 AM

Kayln Miller woke about 9:40 Tuesday morning to the sound of her 2-year-old son, Jacob, yelling.

“I heard my middle son saying, ‘Mommy, hot, mommy, hot,’” Miller, 22, said.

Miller, who had been sleeping in her bedroom with Jacob and 3-year-old James, looked out her door and across the hall to a scene of terror in the room where 17-month-old son Domanick was sleeping.

“The wall was covered in fire. I could hardly see. I grabbed my baby, and scooped up all three in my arms and ran," she said.

About two dozen firefighters from the Lenoir Fire Department arrived at 309 Glendale St. in five trucks as thick smoke poured from the house. The Millers were outside. One firefighter grabbed Domanick from his mother and hurried to carry him to emergency medical workers, who took him to Caldwell Memorial Hospital. Domanick was then taken to Brenner Children’s Hospital in Winston-Salem, where he is being treated for second-degree burns on about 40 percent of his body, said Amanda Cooper, Miller's sister-in-law, but doctors are optimistic about his recovery. The boy was listed in stable condition Tuesday.

Investigators think that either a lava lamp or electric heater in the boy's room started the fire just a few feet away from Domanick's crib, said Lenoir Deputy Fire Chief Ken Hair.

Miller’s father-in-law, James Miller Sr., took James and Jacob to Caldwell Memorial Hospital to be checked. Another child, Johnny, 6, was at school when the fire started.

Four dogs were rescued from the burning house including a small dog resuscitated by Capt. Kenny Nelson, who was off-duty but came to the fire scene. Two more dogs lived outdoors and were fine, but the family cat died in the fire.

Damages were estimated at $30,000 to the house itself and $10,000 to the home’s contents.

Firefighters fought the blaze for nearly three hours, said Lenoir Deputy Fire Chief Ken Hair.

The house was at one time a set of apartments, Miller said. It was owned by her grandmother. It was then passed on to her mother, before she and her husband, James Miller Jr., moved in.

The Caldwell County Fire Marshal’s Office and Lenoir Police assisted the fire department at the scene.