Formerly homeless family of 12 displaced again after overnight house fire in St. Paul

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A St. Paul family is without a home Thursday after a fire broke out overnight in the city’s Frogtown neighborhood.

Crews were called to the home, located on the 300 block of Sherburne Avenue West, just before 12:30 a.m. Thursday.

The St. Paul Fire Department says firefighters arrived to find smoke and flames coming from the home, and a resident was evacuating from a second-floor window.

Firefighters were at the scene for just over three hours but were able to extinguish the flames.

While the cause of the fire hasn’t been released, authorities say they’ve determined it was started by accident.

“We just moved in this house probably two weeks ago. We’ve been, you know, homeless for about seven months, just in and out of hotels. Then we finally get a house and you know, it’s just taken right away from you,” said resident Deszion Wraggs.

Wraggs said he is the father of the 10 children in the house, who range in age from three to 15.

Wraggs told 5 EYEWITNESS NEWS all 10 kids, along with their mother and uncle, were sleeping inside the home when the fire started.

“Their uncle got everyone out. He said once he saw the smoke around, he just woke everybody up. He said he was picking people up, bringing them on the porch and things like that,” Wraggs said.

Wraggs said he was at work when the fire started but came home immediately when he got the call.

He believes everything they owned inside the house was destroyed in the fire.

“That’s materialistic things. I couldn’t get one of their lives back if anything would’ve happened so I’m just grateful everyone is safe,” Wraggs said.

The Red Cross is helping the family.

A GoFundMe has been organized to help the family rebuild.