San Bruno Fire

Crawled up in a ball and trapped in a thicket of bushes in her neighbors’ yard, Maria Barr thought her life was over.

With burning embers and other objects flying through the air, and with the intense smoke from the fire caused by the Sept. 9 pipeline explosion filling her lungs, she had accepted her fate—not wanting to die that way but knowing that she had done all she could to escape.

Then, in a surreal moment, she heard a still, small voice that sounded like her only daughter. “Mom,” she heard.

Although she was scared for her life, at that moment she held out a glimmer of hope, gaining new courage from the thought that she might live and spare her family pain and suffering.

“Lord, don’t let me die,” she called out. “I don’t want to die. Not right now.”

In a miraculous moment, she looked up and someone came to her rescue and helped whisk her to safety. She had survived.

After escaping fire, woman still struggles to move forward,” San Bruno Patch, September 6, 2011