South LA community helps family after fire destroys home on Thanksgiving

SOUTH LOS ANGELES (KABC) -- Rafael Rodriguez was at work when he received a call that his South Los Angeles home was engulfed in flames Thursday morning.

The fire was so intense that it caused the roof to collapse. Thankfully, his wife and two young daughters were with relatives at the time and no one was hurt.

Firefighters received a call around 4:04 a.m. about the house fire, located in the 1100 block of West 73rd Street. Fire officials said the front door was open when they arrived at the house, and they believe the blaze may be arson. The family believes their home was burglarized.

"They took some electronics, Christmas presents for our daughters," he said.

But despite the loss, the family is grateful for their community. Neighbors on either side of the house jumped in to try and save the home before firefighters arrived.

Matias Rodriguez had just come home from work when he saw the blaze and immediately rushed in to help.

It took firefighters about 45 minutes to knock down the blaze, but the house was a total loss. But despite the devastation, Rafael and his family said they have a lot to be thankful for.

"That we still have our lives. Everything else is just materialistic," he said.

The family joined LAFD firefighters for a special Thanksgiving meal and the children received gifts from the Spark of Love toy drive. The Red Cross will also be assisting the family.
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