South Bend home damaged by fire

SOUTH BEND, Ind. -- The South Bend Fire Department responded to a house fire at 218 E. Dayton Street Monday morning.

Dayton Street resident Paul Young jumped into action when he saw smoke coming from his neighbors' house next door.

"I pounded on the door and then I called the fire department,” said Young.

"They speak very little English,” said Frederico "Chico" Rodriguez, South Bend Fire Department Fire Marshal.

They speak so little English that Rodriguez had to be called in to interpret for the family.

"The lady that was staying with the couple, got up to see who was knocking at the door and when she opened the door she noticed there was smoke in the ceiling and in the hallway, so she woke up the other couple and they all exited the house safely,” said Rodriguez.

"I don't understand what he said (Paul Young) but I go outside and my house on fire,” said Quan Gomez.

Despite the communication barrier, Gomez says he appreciates his neighbor's help.

"Thank you very much for my neighbor, thank you for my neighbor,” said Gomez.

"It could have been disastrous, very much so. They were sleeping they work late at night if it wasn't for the knock at the door it could have been a disaster,” said Rodriguez.

"I missing my house but not my life,” said Gomez.

The fire was caused by an electrical problem and is considered accidental, according to the South Bend Fire Department. 

The Gomez family did not have insurance but they are staying with relatives in the area.

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