11-year-old notices strange light on phone while FaceTiming with Dad—it was really bad

October 16, 2017 4:17 pm Last Updated: December 1, 2017 9:48 am

The light that was distracting David Smith as he spoke with his dad on FaceTime wasn’t a lamp or open window reflecting light onto his screen. What was a friendly conversation between a father and his son turned quickly into an emergency situation when David realized exactly what he was seeing.

David was the only one awake at the time and the fate of his family would be decided on what he did next.

The light reflection David was seeing saved his family’s life.

The reflection of light David was seeing was fire. He sprang from his bed and ran as fast as he could to his mother’s room where she was sleeping. He woke her up and told her their house was on fire. They woke his older sister too.

Their response was swift, thankfully. As they ran out of the house grabbing the few things they could, the house became engulfed in flames. Within seconds, the entire house was completely on fire. Marcy, David’s mom, and her children stared at a safe distance as their home burned to the ground.

There were flames were everywhere.


“Within seconds of him getting us up, the flames were everywhere,” said Marcy in an interview with Canadian Broadcasting Company. “It happened so fast. We were standing in the kitchen by the wood stove and the flames just ate around me and David. The entire kitchen just disappeared while we were standing in it.”

The fire, which Marcy said had spread from some trash she had put in the wood stove earlier, was the cause of the disaster. They had burned their trash, in the same manner, many times before. This time, however, something caused the flames to set their home alight. The family did have a fire alarm, but it did not sound.

Their indoor pets perished in the fire.

Although they were able to save themselves, they were not able to save their pets: a dog and some cats. The fact is, according to Marcy, that had David not been awake at the time and acted as quickly as he did, none of them would have survived.

Marcy says that her young son does not fully comprehend the significance of what he did. He saved their lives.

The community and family rallied around to help them.

Once people in the community found out what had happened, they didn’t hesitate to donate items to the family, who lost everything in the fire.

“We have nothing but the pyjamas we had on,” Marcy told CBC.

“I’m just grateful to my son for what he did and grateful to the community for everything that they have done for us,” she said.

“They’ve brought clothes, they’ve donated money for groceries. I mean somebody anonymously donated my son a bike.”

David’s aunt created a GoFundMe account to help her brother and sister-in-law and their family recover from their loss. She wrote on the page asking for help:

“Last nights, July 14, 2017, my brother Rod and his family lost everything to a house fire including their beautiful dog, Marley, their cats and pet rats. They have nothing left except for 3 horses who are being well cared for by wonderful and amazing people in our community.  My sister in law, Marcy has burns on her arm and leg and the children made it out unharmed all saved by the youngest boy, David who is 10. Please, folks, reach out and help, nobody deserves to have something this horrible happen. A big thank you to the emergency responders who spent the night doing all they could!”

Phoebe Ward/GoFundMe