LIVERMORE FALLS, Maine — A 16-year-old girl is being credited with saving the lives of her mother and a family they were staying with fire ripped through a mobile home at 160 Pine Ridge Loop early Wednesday.
Kaitlynn Hall heard what she thought was an alarm clock but it turned out to be a smoke detector going off. She alerted her mother to the fire, Shelli Saindon, 44, said. Hall and her mother were staying with Saindon and her boyfriend, Robert Chabot, 35.
The home was not insured.
“Kaitlynn is my hero,” her mother, Darlene “Darci” Hall, 41, said as she stood in the road. “If it wasn’t for her I don’t know what would have happened. I thank God for my daughter.”
Saindon also thanked God for Kaitlynn.
Hall said she couldn’t see much due to the smoke but could see a glow near the stove in the kitchen.
She alerted Saindon and Chabot, who were asleep in another room in the mobile home.
The two families lost everything, including Kaitlynn Hall’s new school clothes, school supplies and bracelet collection. The teenager was supposed to start school Wednesday as a freshman at Spruce Mountain High School in Jay. She had attended freshman orientation on Tuesday.
About 30 firefighters and nine or 10 trucks from Livermore Falls, Livermore, Jay and a rapid intervention team from Wilton responded to the 4:24 a.m. fire, Livermore Falls Chief Tim “TD” Hardy said at the scene. The Livermore Falls firefighters were still there at 10 a.m. while state fire investigator Chris Stanford examined the destruction.
It is not suspicious, Hardy said. It is believed to have started in the kitchen near the stove.
Chabot tried to reach for baking soda to put the fire out and was burned but declined treatment, Chabot and Hardy said.
The mobile home was engulfed in flames when firefighters arrived, Hardy said. Firefighters tried to put the fire out from the exterior.
“This sucks. We were all in bed,” Chabot said as Saindon talked to the American Red Cross on a cellphone.
Saindon said there was only $1,000 left to pay before they owned the1980 mobile home they rented from Carol Barker.
Hall said she was able to get her daughter’s kitten, Jinx, out of the home but it ran back under the home before she could stop it.
Saindon and Chabot’s two cats, Oreo and S.J., were still missing along with Jinx.
Chabot said a guinea pig died in the fire.
Community members were already pitching in. The two families lost everything except the clothes they were wearing. Saindon said a neighbor gave her a pair of slippers.
Kaitlynn Hall wears size 5 shoes, size 5 pants and small or medium shirts.
The Red Cross was providing housing for Chabot and Saindon; the Halls planned to stay with friends in the neighborhood so Kaitlynn can attend school.