Firefighters were still on the scene hours after a house fire began Tuesday in La Vergne. The fire began about noon in the 1400 block of Emory Oak Cove while the owners were away at work.
"It's a real sad scene, really sad," said neighbor Gordon Burnam.
In a time of tragedy, complete strangers come together as one.
But it's not the way Burnam had hoped to meet his neighbors.
"I really would like to meet the family," he said. "To see someone's house go that fast, it's a sad, sad feeling."
Before he even saw flames, it was smoke that caught the neighbor's attention, as he cut trees at a home directly behind.
"It started with a puff of smoke and then it started rolling out of the vents," Burnam said. "Once it did that, and the wind caught it, it took off - a big gulf of flames."
The furious fire took no mercy, even causing firemen to back out for safety reasons and attack it from the outside.
Before long, additional firemen from La Vergne and Almaville spent more than an hour before they could get the upper hand on the fire.
"I heard the firefighters yelling, looking for people inside, and I saw a lot of people standing, looking outside," said neighbor Autumn Matthews.
Losing their home was too much for the family to take. They have a young son and baby. No one was home at the time, but their beloved pet Greyhound didn't make it.
Now, neighbors are pulling together to do what they can to help the young family get back on their feet.
"We would like to start a food and clothing collection for the family," Matthews said.
"We plan to do a fundraiser to try and help the family out as much as possible, get to know each other," Burnam said.
One of the residents of the home is the assistant head coach/pitching coach at Belmont University. Belmont University Athletics has announced it is accepting donations on behalf of the Barnett family.
Cash donations and gift cards can be sent to the Belmont Baseball office:
Belmont University BaseballATTN: Coach Barnett Donations1900 Belmont BoulevardNashville, TN 37212-3757
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