Sask. family spending Christmas in hotel after home destroyed by fire

·2 min read

A Saskatoon mother and her seven kids are spending Christmas in a hotel after their home was destroyed in a fire.

Shannon Kay says it won't be the celebration they'd hoped for, but she's trying to stay positive. She says the main thing is none of the kids were hurt, and they're all together.

"It hasn't been the greatest. We've always had a home. But we're doing okay," she said.

They're also grieving the loss of their cat, Coco. Coco went missing after the fire, but they've been told he died.

Ten days ago, Kay was in the basement of their 8th Street rental home just after supper. They were preparing to clean the house.

Submitted by Shannon Kay
Submitted by Shannon Kay

"I heard the kids screaming and crying. I came up and could just see flames and smoke," she said.

She ran up the stairs and saw flames coming from the area near the bedrooms. Neither she nor the kids recall the sound of a fire alarm.

They all ran out to the front sidewalk and she called 911. As the sirens of the fire truck got closer, Kay's daughter ran back into the house to get the cat. Kay ran back in and pulled the girl out.

Firefighters extinguished the blaze. The family was examined, then taken to a local hotel. Kay says it's difficult for the kids to remain in such a small space, as they're used to playing in the yard and there are no parks nearby.

Kay says she's grateful to friends and relatives who are trying to help. A neighbour set up a GoFundMe page, and others are trying to find a permanent home for the family.

"We're very grateful and appreciate everything my family's doing for us, especially the emotional support, helping us get through this, helping me get back onto my feet," she said.

Kay says she's hopeful they'll find a place to live soon.

The cause of the fire has not yet been determined.