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Single mother of 4 homeless after house fire: ‘It went so quickly’

Posted at 11:49 AM, Feb 13, 2016
and last updated 2016-02-13 20:18:13-05

COLONIAL HEIGHTS,  Va. -- A single mother and her young family escaped a house fire with nothing but their pajamas on in Colonial Heights.

The Saturday morning fire heavily damaged Kat Taber’s home in the 100 block of Lexington Drive and destroyed everything inside.

Taber said the fire started when her son was making breakfast and a paper towel caught fire on the stove.

 Kat Taber and WTVR CBS 6 reporter Brendan King.

Kat Taber and WTVR CBS 6 reporter Brendan King.

“My son tried to toss it out the backdoor and it went so quickly,” Taber said.

Neighbors say the fire moved quickly from outside the back of the house through the front of the house before spreading upstairs.

Taber recently a foster child into her home. Her renter’s insurance lapsed within the past month due to a debit card issue.

She is also has been a paramedic for the past 20 years.

“I’m the person that’s usually on the other side of this, I’m usually the person on scene helping other people cope with this,” Taber said. “To watch your house go up and to watch all of your things and all of your memory to go up, I can’t put it into words.”

The structure suffered major damage before the fire was brought under control a little before 11 a.m.

The fire

The fire

CBS 6 senior reporter Wayne Covil was on scene and gave a live report on Facebook.

Investigators determined that the fire was accidental in nature and started when paper towels came in contact with the stove during cooking.

Red Cross was called to to assist the family, who is in the process of creating a GoFundMe account.

Family friend Mark Talbott will be collecting clothing donations for the family Sunday from 7 a.m. until 7 a.m. Monday at the Southside Virginia Emergency Crew 425 Graham Road in Petersburg. Donations can also be made by calling 804-896-0629.