Little boy alerts family to house fire

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POSTED: Friday, April 27, 2012 - 5:00am

UPDATED: Friday, April 27, 2012 - 5:04am

He's only four and still rides a tricycle, but ask Andra McGowan about the electrical fire that started in his room Wednesday morning and he won't hesitate to tell you when you ask him.

"I think I was a hero," said Andra.

That's because it was Andra who alerted his mother and two friends in the living room to the danger they all were in because of the fire.

"I saw the fire come out of the plug," explained Andra, describing how it started while he was in bed watching Barney on television.

"I just called my mom for help," he recalled.

"I heard my baby yelling and screaming, 'Mommy!' He kept saying, 'Fire! Fire!'" said Andra's mother Anica Duke.

"I ran into the room where he was," said Duke. "It was him. His yelling out. That alarmed me and I ran immediately and I thank God that I ran immediately 'cause it was already growing too fast," she said, crediting her little boy for the reason everyone escaped without any injures.

According to fire officials, most children Andra's age hide when they see a fire start, sometimes with tragic consequences.

"Andra is awesome. I'm so glad that God gave him the wisdom," said Andra's grandmother Sandra Jones.

Jones owns the house on Graham Avenue on the city's east side, but said she was at work when the fire started.

"They're alive. We're alive and we just keep it moving," said Jones.

While a lot of four year olds would be worried about all the toys destroyed in the fire, Andra was concerned about something entirely different.

"I lost my shoes," lamented Andra. "And all my clothes. All my church clothes."

"Let me tell you something. That baby loves to go to church. He loves to shout. He loves to praise God," said Andra's grandmother.

"Man of God," said his mother.

"He was a little tore up about his church shoes and stuff, but he's fine," she added.

That's what Duke and her mother said they were most thankful for, even as they looked at their home totally destroyed by the fire.

"Things can be replaced. I don't know yet how they will be replaced, but I'm just glad that I did not lose my child," Duke said.

"We don't have to go to a funeral. We're not burying anybody. We don't have to go to the hospital. God is awesome and I know that he looks out for us," said Jones.

This time, though, He got some help from a little boy who will be back at church this Sunday, whether he's got church clothes and shoes or not.

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