Mele and Victor Fuimaono were signing a lease for another apartment Saturday when they got a call from their daughter telling them their current house was on fire.
"She called, crying, ‘The whole house was down,’" Mele Fuimaono said. "The only thing we own now is the clothes on our back."
The couple was among the 20 people who lost their home when a two-alarm blaze destroyed a single-story house in Kaimuki at 1354 15th Ave., said Honolulu Fire Department Capt. David Jenkins. Five families were displaced — three in the destroyed home and two in a neighboring home that sustained some damage.
Five people lived in the neighboring home. The American Red Cross was assisting.
One woman was burned in the fire and paramedics took her to the hospital, while two firefighters were treated at the scene — one for injuring a hand during a fall and the other for dehydration, Jenkins said.
Firefighters responding to a 2:15 p.m. call found flames and smoke engulfing half of the house. About 35 firefighters brought the blaze under control by 2:55 p.m.
Fifteenth Avenue was closed between Keanu Street and Noeau Street until just past 7 p.m.
Jenkins said the cause of the fire and a damage estimate were under investigation.