Six-year-old alerts Carlsbad family of house fire

Created: 01/02/2014 6:23 PM
By: Lauren Hansard, KOB Eyewitness News 4

He may be only six years old, but a Carlsbad family said their kindergartner saved their lives. 

Just days after Christmas, six-year-old D.J. Palen was asleep in his bed when he started to feel sick.

“Well, I banged on my mom’s door, and I said mom please wake up.  I don’t know what this thing is that keeps making me throw up,” said D.J. Palen.

“My husband got up, opened the door and soon as he did, the smoke just filled our bedroom and he said honey the house is on fire, get up and get the kids out," said Renea Palen.

Renea and her son both got out, while her husband tried to put out the flames.  But their daughter, Elizabeth was still in the house.  She was stuck in her bedroom.

“He comes and gets the water hose and I asked him where Elizabeth was and he said she hasn't come out yet? And I said no, so I started screaming for him to get her out,” said Renea Palen.  “So I ran and opened her window and pulled her out.  And I just started thanking God, thank you Jesus, thank you Jesus that we got out."

The father, Zack Palen, put out most of the flames in the kitchen with a home fire extinguisher.

The family said it could have been a lot worse if it wasn’t for D.J.

“God used D.J. to save our lives," said Renea Palen.

D.J. is thankful too.

“I just am thankful for a nice house to live in, food, and just like being safe," said D.J. Palen.

The family’s church where Zack Palen is a Pastor gave the family a place to stay.

“It’s really good for us to have a great God to do that," said D.J. Palen.

The fire department said the family’s heater started the fire.

The family said it will be at least a month before they can move back in.

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