"When I tell you I saw it and I can't wrap my brain around it,"


That's how KATC Good Morning Acadiana anchor Tracy Wirtz described the surreal scene in her living room Thursday night. What started as a typical night for Tracy and her family took a very dangerous turn about 8:30 that evening.


A bookshelf in Tracy's living room had burst into flames. The fire was first noticed by Tracy's teenage son Cory who told KATC,

"And I saw it and I kind of just sat there for a couple of seconds, just looking at it thinking, "Wow my house is on fire." I never imagined this happening to me,"

Fortunately Tracy and her husband Kevin had made sure their children knew what to do and how to react in an emergency. Cory alerted his Father and then made sure that his mother and sister were awakened and were on their way out the door.  Cory's sister was on the phone with the fire department while Kevin and Tracy gathered up the family animals and moved them out of the house while it was still safe to do so.

The damage to Tracy's home is certainly not as bad as it could have been. Most of the fire damage is confined to one room but there is smoke damage throughout the house. The smoke is what Tracy remembers most about the incident.

"Believe me when I say that smoke is what kills. I asked that to the fireman today. And they told me that that is indeed the fact. And I'm here to tell you that that is the truth,"

While the exact cause of the fire remains under investigation speculation centers around an electrical outlet in the living room. Tracy and Kevin spent most of the day Saturday attempting to recover books, photos, and family treasures that were damaged in the fire. They also spent a good deal of the day counting their blessings.

When I spoke to Tracy on Saturday afternoon she told me to tell you.

Please check your smoke detectors, make sure they are working properly. Make sure you have enough smoke detectors to adequately provide coverage for your home. It's not the fire that will kill you, it's the smoke. Smoke detectors save lives.

We echo those sentiments here at 97.3 The Dawg. Don't let your life turn into a tragedy because you were too busy to buy batteries. Tracy should be back on the air with us here at 97.3 The Dawg later this afternoon and on KATC's Good Morning Acadiana tomorrow.

Our special thanks to the Crowley Fire Department for their quick and professional response in this incident and thanks to all of the 97.3 The Dawg listeners who called and sent Facebook messages to check on Tracy and her family.