16-year-old saves brother during house fire - News, Weather and Sports for Lincoln, NE; KLKNTV.com

16-year-old saves brother during house fire

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By: Sabrina Ahmed

A house fire in Eagle on Thursday changes a family's life forever.  Without the help of one of the kids, things could have ended a lot worse.

One little boy has his 16–year–old sister to thank for making it out safely.  She woke him up when the fire started and got them out of the house and called 911.

Her name is Tierra Zierenberg.  She said it all happened really fast.  First, she heard the smoke alarm and didn't think anything of it.  When she walked into the kitchen, there was a fire on the stove. 

"I was panicking, didn't really know what to do, so then I ran upstairs and got my other brother and then we just ran out of the house," Tierra said.

She and her younger brother were the only two home.  After they got out safely, the fire took over most of the house.

After calling the fire department, she made a frantic phone call to her dad, Scott.

"When my daughter called me after she had called 911, that screaming panicky, 'Dad, the house is on fire,' I don't think I've made it here faster than ever.  I just couldn't get here fast enough."

Scott said this has been a tough year for the family.  Financially, renters insurance wasn't in the cards for him and his kids.

Now, the house is unlivable and just about everything they own is ruined.  For Scott and his family, they are thankful.

Thankful to have made it out alive.  And happy to be surrounded by people who care.

"Materialistic things mean nothing.  I couldn't even imagine if my kids got killed or severely injured in this," Scott said.

he said he's thankful every day for the way his daughter reacted to the fire.  And how quickly she got herself and her brother out of the house.

"I'm just proud of 'em, I'm really proud of my daughter and, just stepped up and did what she could with what she had."

Scott's eldest daughter set up a fund at West Gate Bank to help her family.  The family said they will be grateful for anything anyone is willing to give, as they try to piece their lives back together.

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