SCOTT CITY, MO (KFVS) - Fire crews from several departments battled an early morning house fire on the outskirts of Scott City, Missouri.
Emergency crews were called to the home on Betty Drive just before 2 a.m. on Wednesday, Nov. 22.
Firefighters used water from a nearby pond to battle the blaze.
The homeowners said they built the home together more than a decade ago.
"I built this house by hand," said Orley Jackson. "I built all that and it went up. It took me eight years to build this house."
Jackson said a working smoke alarm likely saved them. Everyone, including the family pets, made it out of the home safely.
"It woke my wife up, we jumped up, and we couldn't see no blazes nowhere," said Jackson.
Scott City Fire Chief Scott Cassout said it could have been much worse.
"If these people didn't have a smoke alarm that was working, they could've perished," said Cassout. "Despite losing their home despite losing everything inside the family who used to live here tell me they're thankful this holiday – for their lives."
The family Thanksgiving celebration was to take place at this home, according to the homeowner. They said they're just thankful to be alive.
The home is considered a complete loss.
Jackson said the home was not insured due to a recent health battle. He said it became a matter of fighting cancer or paying for insurance.
"My wife's medicine and my medicine is now running us over $1,400 a month," said Jackson.
Crews from Scott City, Cape Girardeau, Delta, and Gordonville worked together to extinguish the fire.