A Smith County man said he and his wife made it out of a Sunday night house fire with only the clothes on their backs but felt fortunate to be alive.
Harold Matlock, 64, and his wife Carolyn’s home caught fire around 9 p.m. in the 2100 block of County Road 2147, off of Farm-to-Market Road 346 east of Whitehouse.
Matlock said he came home from the store and went to his back bedroom where his wife was watching TV. Matlock said he was home for about five minutes when he smelled something burning and went to investigate. When he opened his wife’s front bedroom door, he said flames were visible and they ran outside.
Troup Volunteer Fire Department Chief Tim said the first crews arrived on scene between seven and 10 minutes after the call, but the roof of the old home was already collapsing.
Arp and Whitehouse volunteer departments also responded to the scene.
Matlock said the house was over 100 years old and was in the family for generations. His great grandmother and great aunt lived there at one point, he said.
The home was not insured, but the couple had a place to stay for the night.
The cause of the fire remains under investigation by the Smith County Fire Marshal’s Office.