MALVERN, Ark. (KTHV) -- Samara Ballejo was spending the night with her aunt, uncle and two cousins last Saturday when she woke up in the midst of flames and smoke. Now the nine year old's family says her quick thinking and calm demeanor saved their lives.
What began as a Saturday night sleep over for Samara Ballejo and her cousins, David and Jordin, quickly turned into a nightmare.
"I was really, really scared. I thought the house was going to blow up," says Samara. "We were all sleeping and I woke up and there was smoke everywhere."
A fire, believed to have been caused by an electrical problem, engulfed their bedroom, giving them only seconds to get out. That is when 9 year old Samara took charge.
"I told them to run out. I was covering their face and I told them to run out because I couldn't see," says Samara.
"When I woke up, I felt the heat from the fire," says David Morris. He and his wife Sara say in all the commotion, they didn't realize their niece Samara had already saved their children.
"I thought she was waking us up to get everybody out but apparently she had already got our kids out, her cousins and then she came back in with the house already engulfed," says Morris.
David and Samara both suffered third degree burns. The rest of the family escaped unharmed.
"I was trying to cover up my face. My top of my head got singed," says Samara.
Now, the Morris' are starting over but thankful for their lives and the quick thinking of a nine year old girl.
"My little niece Samara will always be a part of my heart for saving my kids. You can't put a price on that," says David.
The Morris' say they have been overwhelmed by the generosity of friends, neighbors and complete strangers. In fact, they just got the keys to a new home. They plan to start moving in this weekend.
Samara attributes her quick thinking to what she learned in school. She starts the fourth grade later this month.
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