Former volunteer firefighter saves family
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BOLIVAR, Tenn. — A fire in Hardeman County destroys the home of a former volunteer firefighter, but Thursday he is being called a hero for saving his two children from the flames. “Once we got out of the house, it just started taking over,” Tim Clark said. “We couldn’t do anything about it, and we watched everything go.” The fire started just after one o’clock Thursday morning. Bolivar Fire Department officials say they believe it started in the kitchen. Clark, a former volunteer firefighter, says he woke up coughing from thick smoke and immediately reacted. “He grabbed me and then shook me by my feet, and we don’t know how the fire started,” Landon Clark said. Clark was able to get his two children out just in time. He says only his son was hurt, suffering a burn to his face. “The worst feeling was having my kids ask me where we were going to live, what we are going to wear and what we are going to eat,” Clark said. “Not giving them a home for security was the worst feeling than anything else.” Clark says it only took four minutes for the house to be fully engulfed in flames. Neighbors say it was the children’s screams from outside that awoke them in the middle of the night. “I’m just glad he got out alive,” Franklin Cheirs said. “Him and his kids, they weren’t hurt or nothing. Just a little smoke inhalation, but he’ll get over that.” Fire officials say they used four trucks and assistance from the Whiteville Fire Department to put out the fire. Clark says realizing he has no home is painful but that the most important things in his life were saved. “Nothing you can do but pick up and start over,” Clark said. “I mean, the most important thing I have is what I walked out of the house with them. Everything else can be replaced.” Officials say the fire currently is under investigation, but they do not suspect anything suspicious.