When Cindy Easton left for a late shift at work Thursday night and set her four-year old son up to watch a movie while his sister and stepfather had already drifted off to bed, she never imagined it would lead to the saving of lives.
“He’s a hero,” said Easton, sitting in front of her burnt out home Saturday morning. “He literally saved his sister’s life because she was sleeping under the area where a portion of roof collapsed.”
Fire broke out in the home of Joshua and Cindy Easton at 303 Circle Drive sometime after midnight Friday, Jan. 25 with the City of Vienna fire department reporting its arrival on the scene at 12:49 a.m. Four-year old Aiden McGill and his sister Arris McGill were home with their stepfather when the fire started, but only Aiden was awake to notice something was wrong.
“He knew just what to do,” said Easton. “He was persistent in his warnings to Joshua that something was wrong and he saved his family.”
Easton said that sometime after midnight Aiden’s movie cut out and he went to wake his stepfather saying the power was out upstairs. While the cause of the fire is still under investigation, it is believed to have been an electrical-induced fire, which began in the attic.
“The power was still functioning downstairs so Joshua didn’t think there was really anything wrong and encouraged Aiden to just come to bed,” said Easton. “But when Aiden went back upstairs he smelled smoke and he knew something was wrong.”
Easton said that it was a “miracle” no one was hurt and that her son was brave enough to act accordingly. She praised the fire department and its volunteer squad who arrived within 15 minutes from the call expressing her gratitude towards their efforts. Easton’s home was filled with black soot and was heavily water damaged with a hole burned through the roof, but Easton said it was only materials lost, not lives, and material items are replaceable.
“Aiden is a hero in my book,” said Easton. “His persistence saved his sister and stepdad and himself.”
Easton added that Aiden attended a Fire Safety Program conducted by the Goreville Fire Department this past October and she said she hopes they are able to continue offering the program because she credits it for her son’s awareness of what to do.
“He was saying, ‘There’s smoke. We have to call the fire department. We have to get out of the house,’ he knew exactly what to do and his actions saved the family,” said Easton.