‘That’s my house’: Suffolk dispatcher answers 911 call about fire that took her home, 3 dogs

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SUFFOLK, Va. (WAVY) — A Suffolk dispatcher lost her home and three dogs following an early morning fire, police say.

In a post on Facebook, Suffolk police said Barbara Hughes was on duty at the Emergency Communications Center when the fire happened — and dispatched the fire call herself.

City officials said firefighters responded to the 3100 block of Indian Trail around 1:30 a.m. Responding units found a fully-involved fire at her home. 

Hughes has been a dispatcher for more than 20 years and told 10 On Your Side she never thought this would happen to her.

“I was telling my coworkers, ‘that’s my house.’ Then I kind of wasn’t sure,” Hughes said. “I was wishy-washy whether it was my house or the house in front of me or maybe it was just flames from a mile down the road. But I felt it. I felt it that it was my house.”

Firefighters marked the blaze under control shortly before 2:30 a.m., but Hughes’ home was destroyed. She lost three dogs and all of her belongings in the fire.

The post by Suffolk police included a link to a GoFundMe that was created to assist Hughes. 

Investigators are working to determine the cause of the fire.

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