It was a typical evening at the Davidson household in New Tazewell, Tennessee, on December 8th. Chris and Nicole Davidson fed their three children, sat in bed and slept at 8:30 p.m.
Hours later, Nicole Davidson wakes up to the smell of smoke. Within minutes, the family’s home was on fire – and 22-month-old Erin Davidson was trapped in her room.
While the couple was able to grab their two-year-old son Elijah and Eli, who had been cared for by the family for almost a year, Erin’s bedroom was surrounded by fire.
“The smoke and the fire were so thick I could not reach her,” Chris Davidson told CNN. “We went outside to get her out of the window, but there was nothing for me to get up to get there. So I pick up Eli, who goes through the window and can get her out of her bed. grab.”
“We could not be more proud of Eli,” Davidson said. “He did something a grown man would not do.”
And he did it just in time.
When 20 firefighters arrived on the scene, the house was already engulfed in flames. By the next day, “nothing was left,” Josh Miracle, fire chief of New Tazewell, told CNN.
“I thought I could not do it, but then I said, ‘I got her, Dad,'” Eli told CNN. “I was scared, but I did not want my sister to die.”
The Davidsons supported 34 children, including Eli, and adopted two others – Erin and Elijah. Both Nicole and Chris Davidson are also former firefighters.
“We lost everything we’ve ever had,” Chris Davidson said. “Our whole life was in that house. Our three cars were also damaged in the fire.”
“It’s devastating. We have nothing,” he said. “You’ve never been so humble as when you did not even have your own underwear to wear.”