Bernadine B oyd has lived on M innehaha A venue longer than anyone else on the block, 23 years, but Wednesday evening, B ernadine says she went to stay with her daughter since her son, who normally stays with her, was out of town.
B ut little did she know that would be the last time she would ever see her home.
"If I would ask anything that would be for prayers from the people, because right now I am hurting," Boyd said.
" I received the phone call shortly after 6:00 this morning and it was the most horrible phone call I 've ever received."
Bernadine's house was fully engulfed. Her next door neighbor awoke from a dead sleep by another neighbor banging on the door. " I wanted to make sure they got out because they were very close," said Cindy Culver, a neighbor.
" The flames were up there and all over. They were just terrible," said Estelle Stout, a next door neighbor.
Hillsborough County Fire responded.
Bernadine got her first look Thursday afternoon when fire crews brought in heavy equipment to move what was left of her belongings to put out the hot spots.
" It's the most horrible thing because all the memories, my children's pictures on the wall, things that I can never ever replace," Bernadine said.
But B ernadine is a woman of faith, a nd even though right now is hard she says she realizes her true prized possessions are still right here with her, her kids.
"I'm just so thankful to God."
Fire officials are still investigating what caused the fire.
Bernadine says she's anxious to find out and plans on staying with family in the meantime.