Family needs donations in wake of fire

A friend of a family whose home was damaged in a fire early Sept. 18 that left one person in critical condition is seeking help from the community.

The fire broke out on Goforth Road before dawn. Kyle Fire Chief Kyle Taylor said firefighters were notified at 5:03 a.m. and arrived on the scene approximately 9 minutes later.

“We sent all three of our stations,” he said, adding that the cause of the fire, which was quickly brought under control,  is still under investigation. What is known is that it started in a downstairs living room of the two-story home. “The house is not a total loss,” Taylor said, but has “quite a bit of smoke damage to belongings inside.”

Maribel Muñoz said it was home to Yolanda and Maurillio Vinega and their two grandchildren, girls aged 10 and 3. She said the girls’ mother died giving birth to the younger child, and they are now fearful of losing their grandmother, who was in critical condition Sept. 19, being treated for smoke inhalation.

“We’re praying so hard these girls get to keep their grandma,” Muñoz said. “She’s pretty much a hero. She got grandpa and the little one out to safety and then went back in to get the 10-year-old.”

Both girls are staying with an aunt and the older girl returned to school at Uhland Elementary the day after the fire. Muñoz said the school has given her a new backpack, puzzles, games and school uniforms. The younger girl had not yet returned to Head Start.

She said the Red Cross of Central Texas has offered some financial support, but the family is going to need things like furniture and a TV. They will also need general cleaning supplies and volunteers to do the cleaning.

While the grandmother remains hospitalized, Muñoz said other family members are “sticking close … I’m just trying to get people to donate what they need.”

Muñoz can be reached at 512-679-5357.

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