ST. AMANT — Trulena Guedry experienced something Thursday morning no mother wants to endure.
She was in her home on Taylor Sheets Jr. Road in St. Amant with her four children when she discovered the living room had caught fire.
She rushed the children, ages 2 to 10, out of the house, unsuccessfully attempted to extinguish the fire and dialed 911.
Less than 15 minutes later, volunteers with the St. Amant Fire Department were on scene fighting the blaze, but it was too late. The house was a total loss with nothing left standing.
“I got them four out, and that’s all that matters,” Guedry said Thursday afternoon while playing with her 2-year-old son near the rubble on the family’s property. “Everything else is replaceable. They’re not.”
A frustrated Kevin Guedry, Trulena’s husband, said before leaving for the bank before it closed, “I had just got to work” when the fire started.
Because the Guedry residence lost electrical power during the night, family members were using candles to provide lighting. The couple’s two daughters, ages 6 and 8, accidentally knocked over a candle they didn’t know was lit and started the fire, Trulena Guedry said.
Despite the loss, she said, the family will be fine.
The American Red Cross assisted the Guedrys with food, personal hygiene kits and emotional support, while also providing new clothes and toys for the four children.
“We’re deeply saddened for this family,” said Bobbi M. Zaunbrecher, of the Louisiana Capital Area Chapter of the Red Cross. “As we continue to support them, we also encourage other families to do everything they can to reduce the risk of a home fire.”
Trulena Guedry said the family’s immediate plans remain unsettled despite getting “so many offers” of places to stay. Her husband has relatives in the area, and her parents live in Denham Springs.
The house was insured, she said, and she’s confident the Guedrys will bounce back.
“We’ll rebuild, start over,” Trulena Guedry said. “We’ll make new memories. I want to get (the kids) a house. That’s most important.”