STERLING, Va. - A Northern Virginia family was reunited with their beloved dog Friday, after their home was destroyed by fire a week ago.
The blaze broke out in the basement of their Sterling, Virginia home on February 21, spreading throughout the home and up into the attic.
The family of four that lives in the home was not injured, but Quanisha Richardson says her two cats were killed, her family’s dog Diamond was trapped inside and everything her parents had ever worked for was destroyed.
In an emotional interview, Richardson described the scene. “Watching my dad cry, my dad doesn’t cry. Watching him cry, knowing that everything he worked for was just gone in flames. It was just hard seeing my parents hurt like that after they worked so hard.”
A neighbor’s surveillance camera captured the towering flames and smoke billowing from the home with Diamond still trapped inside.
Incredibly, firefighters were able to pull Diamond from the inferno. She was unresponsive, but they performed CPR on the seven year old pitbull and rushed her to a local vet.
Diamond was in severe respiratory distress and suffering from first and second degree burns when she arrived at LIFECentre Emergency & Speciality Veterinary Care in Leesburg, Virginia.
After three days on a ventilator, the vets were able to save her life and even organized a fundraiser to help cover the cost of her pricey emergency care.
LIFECentre’s Dr. Polly Glover says Diamond was a special case. “Of course we love all of our pets, our patients here, they’re all very special, but there’s just something about her and her situation and her condition that really just, everybody pulled together from the first responders, all the way through the community. It’s just been wonderful to see the outpouring of support,” she said.
Richardson and her family say they’ve been shocked by the generosity of their friends, family and neighbors.
“We were thinking that it was really just going to be us four rebuilding, from the ground up, which we were prepared to do, but when everyone started calling and donating or leaving notes or reaching out to us personally, we were like dang, this is getting big. God is really trying to pour into our lives and let us know, I got you," she said.
However, Diamond’s fight is far from over. She will need to return to the clinic daily for hyperbolic oxygen therapy and to check on her eye ulcers and burns.