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DALLAS (CBSDFW.COM) – More than a dozen families were without a home Sunday night after a five-alarm fire gutted an apartment complex in southwest Dallas.

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Fifty-four people were displaced by an afternoon fire at the Case de Loma Apartments on North Randolph Drive.

Resident Rachel Williams said she had no time to grab anything – not even her two cats.

Credit: KTVT/Brian New

Credit: KTVT/Brian New

“They are dead at the door,” she said with tears running down her face. “We lost everything. We lost everything.”

The cause of the fire remains under investigation but firefighters said it spread quickly through a large shared attic.

Eighteen units in two buildings were destroyed. Others in the complex had smoke and water damage.

Lisa Contreras and her family didn’t even have time to grab shoes.

She said, “I just grabbed the baby and my daughter and we all ran out.”

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More than a hundred firefighter were on scene in minutes, but in those critical moments before they arrived neighbors pounded on doors and screamed to get out.

When police officers pulled the final four children out of the building – all safe and uninjured – Rachel Williams said she realized not all was lost.

“Thank God. We got everybody out,” she said repeatedly.

Credit: KTVT/Brian New

Credit: KTVT/Brian New

The local chapter of the American Red Cross made sure all impacted families had a place to stay for the night. The Red Cross will also be working to provide clothes, shoes, and groceries for many of the residents.


(©2014 CBS Local Media, a division of CBS Radio Inc. All Rights Reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten, or redistributed.)

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