Disabled man pulled from burning house

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Updated: 9/09/2013 9:28 am
JACKSONVILLE, Fla. -- One man was critically injured Sunday when his home on the 1800 block of Spearing Street went up in flames. Police suspect arson was the cause of the fire.

Smoke from the fire could be seen blocks away. Investigators declared the home a total loss.

Susie George is the homeowner and lives next door. She said the house has been in her family for more than 50 years.

"I can't do nothing about the house but my brother, he's all I got. He's always been here with me," said George.

George's brother, 62 year-old Cecil Hepler, and two other men were inside the home when the fire started. John Kenny, who lives in the home, was the first to notice something was wrong.

"I jumped out in my underwear. I didn't grab nothing. I just started hollering 'I need help, I need help,'" said Kenny.

Because Hepler is disabled, Kenny and another man had to drag him out of the burning house, he said.

Hepler was transported to UF Health and Shands Jacksonville. He is listed in critical condition.

"The reason we think there might be arson or foul play is because there was another fire nearby at the same time," said JSO Sgt. Dan Janson.

Three men are now without a home. George says she's praying who ever is responsible will come forward.

"I would appreciate any body's help in finding out who these people are because my brother could be losing his life right now

According to George, her home did not have insurance.

If you have any information about the string of fires, give the Florida arson hotline a call at 1-877-662-7766.
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