Family mourns loss of 22-year-old girl in Laguna Street house fire
BAKERSFIELD, Calif. (KGET) – A Bakersfield family mourn the loss of their 22-year-old daughter to a house fire early Saturday morning.
A house fire so fierce that the parents of a disabled woman could not save her.
Kallista Thompson’s parents, Roy Hernandez and Linnet Hernandez fought to save their daughter.
They described a frantic attempt to reach Kallista in her room before she had to escape. Kallista died and the fire caused extensive damage to the house.
Roy kicked Kallista’s door open as his wife witnessed a fireball come out of the room. He avoided the explosion and rushed inside. When the flames forced him out, he came back, this time lower to the ground. But no one could do anything.
“He told me she was gone, get out of here,” said Kallista’s mother Linnet Hernandez. “Get out of here, she’s gone.” I have our 10 year old daughter, I’m chasing her out the door. She cries out for her sister. She wants to come in. I tell myself no, we have to go, we have to get out. I’m on the phone with 911. I’m telling them please hurry.
Kallista was 22 years old. Linnet said she had friends and was loved by her family.
A day later, the house is marked by burns. The hallway leading to Kallista’s room was burnt down. The room itself, barely recognizable. Her mother said Kallista had lived her life in pain.
“Kallista was born with epidermolysis bullosa,” Linnet said. “Her skin swells up and peels away from the body. It is very painful. She lived 22 years in pain doing normal things that you and I took for granted. To be able to walk, jump, walk. She could never do it.
Roy said the smoke detector in Kallista’s bedroom never went off while the one in the hallway activated, but only after he kicked the door open.
Investigators told Linnet they believe Kallista did not feel the flames.
“The investigator told us that she most likely succumbed to the smoke inhalation and escaped peacefully,” Linnet said.
It happened on Laguna Street, near College Avenue and Oswell Street. Friends and family helped pick up what was left of the house where Kallista and her family once lived.
“We can’t live here anymore,” said Kallista’s stepfather Roy. “Our daughter died in this house and we just know we have to get our things back and never come back. We don’t really know what the next step is. Everything is blurry.
Friends have created a GoFundMe page to help the family with the costs.
“We have set a goal of $ 20,000. Some of this money will go towards funeral expenses, ”said Rudy Rodriguez, a friend of the family. “Anything more will help them find another place to live. They live with a relative but I know they want to be alone. They want to be in their place.
At the moment, it is not known what started the fire.
The family say they are looking for permanent accommodation and have set up a GoFundMe account to help pay for Kallista’s funeral and other expenses. You can donate to him on this link.