THE family that survived a roaring house fire have been ‘overwhelmed’ by the support they have received.
Adam Tester, 33, saved the lives of his three children – Scarlett, four, Lola, two and Ronnie, one, when he helped them out of their smoke-logged family home in Boxgrove, Goring. Adam’s fiancée, and mother of the children, Shelley Cave, 27, managed to escape from an upstairs window.
Adam said: “I can’t find the words to say how grateful we are. I didn’t think the community spirit was like it has been. I thought those days were gone.
“We are so overwhelmed with everything. When the fire first happened I thought ‘that’s it’. We can see light at the end of the tunnel now.”
Since the rescue, Adam has been called a hero, however, he said he was just doing what anyone else would have done.
“Hopefully everyone would have had a go,” he said. “I don’t see myself as a hero. I just see myself as someone trying to get my family out. It all happened so quick, I can remember finding the fire and I remember looking for my kids and then being outside.”
The family is currently living with Adam’s parents while repairs are carried out to their home. They are hoping to be back in the house before Christmas.
Last Friday, the whole family visited Worthing Fire Station along with the British Red Cross. They talked to the crew about the night of the fire and the children were allowed onto the fire engines.
Since the fire, firefighters from Worthing station have visited residents in Boxgrove and the surrounding area to offer support with checking smoke alarms.
Shelley said: “The visit to the fire brigade was really good. It was like therapy for the children as well, because they had been wary of sirens and things.
“The house has been completely gutted now. Local businesses have donated skips and the electrics are all being done by Simpson Electrical Engineers. We have had so much stuff we can’t believe it. We weren’t expecting that many people to be so kind to us. Thank you so much to everyone, we wouldn’t have anything if it wasn’t for people being so kind to us.”
Clothing, toys, kitchen equipment and toiletries have also been donated.
When the family move back into their house the fire service will go through a fire safety check with them.