Arlington resident Bill Barkes and his 11-year-old daughter, Sarah, are now talking about the house fire they survived last week — the fire that claimed the lives of his wife and her sister.
Barkes told NBC4’s Pat Collins that he tried tried to save Mary and Emily after climbing a ladder and saving Sarah, who is now recovering from severe burns, but the fire was too hot.
“I felt helpless… I didn’t want to leave them,” he said, sobbing, in Sarah’s hospital room. “I wanted to jump in but I figured if I did and I didn’t get out she’d be an orphan.”
Mary, Bill’s wife, died after running back in the house to try to save Emily.
An online fundraising campaign for the family has so far raised more than $66,000.