MIAMI-DADE COUNTY, Fla. – An elderly man was killed in a house fire early Wednesday morning in southwest Miami-Dade, authorities confirmed.
According to Miami-Dade Police Detective Alvaro Zabaleta, residents of the home in the 8000 block of Southwest 94th Court said they had a barbecue Tuesday, went to bed and then were awakened by their dog barking.
The residents told the fire department they had their barbecue around 6 p.m. and that the fire started around 3 a.m.
Caridad Pino says her son was inside the home with his girlfriend and his three kids when the fire started.
“I’m devastated, I fell on the floor when I got here. I couldn’t stand, that’s my only son,” Pino said.
Their dog luckily was able to that wake them up right around the time when the fire started and fortunately all five family members were able to get out.
Pino’s son, Peter Benítez, was transported Kendall Regional Medical Center with second-degree burns on his face, arms and back, but his kids and girlfriend are okay.
The elderly man was in the rear efficiency on the property and was pronounced dead at the scene. Fire rescue says he did not make it out on time.
“He was nice, soft spoken, caring with the kids,” Pino said.
Their dog, Daisy, who is a pit bull mix with white and brown spots is still unaccounted for. Pino’s family is asking for the public’s help to find her.
The official cause of the fire remains under investigation.
Miami-Dade Fire Rescue officials want to remind the public to install smoke detectors in their homes.
A GoFundMe page has been created to help the Benítez family during their time of need.