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Fire leaves family homeless on Christmas Eve

By Star-Advertiser Staff

LAST UPDATED: 11:52 a.m. HST, Dec 24, 2010

A family of four is homeless on Christmas Eve after a two-alarm fire burned their home in Waianae overnight.

The fire was reported just before midnight and caused $270,000 damage to the single-story, wooden home on Kaukamana Street, said Capt. Terry Seelig, the fire department spokesman.

Arriving firefighters saw flames and smoke coming from the home. All four occupants -- two adults and two children -- had escaped without injury, Seelig said.

Next door neighbor Rosanna Kea said she heard people yelling to get out of the house and saw flames coming out of both sides of the home.

She said she tried to use a garden hose on the fire, but the heat was so intense it shattered windows on her home.

About 30 firefighters brought the flames under control at 12:13 a.m.

The American Red Cross put the family -- a 29-year-old man, 31-year-old woman and two daughters, ages 5 and 10 -- up in a hotel last night, said Tony Kato, a spokesman for the American Red Cross.

The Red Cross also provided money for clothes and food. They also gave the family comfort kits with toothbrushes, toothpaste and other necessities and Mickey Mouse stuffed animals for the children, Kato said.

A fire investigator was to return to the home this morning to determine the cause of the blaze, Seelig said.

Kea said electricity had been cut off to the house and the family was using candles and portable lanterns for light.

She said the family also received an eviction notice recently.

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