A Flannery Street family forced to flee from a small fire Wednesday re-entered their home to find their pet turtles unscathed.
Rome-Floyd County firefighters quickly doused the flames that broke out just after 5:30 p.m. in a back room of 1403 Flannery St. It happened in the room Quentin Mallory calls his mancave, and he was relieved to learn his four turtles suffered no ill effects from the smoke.
"I like all pets," Mallory said. "When I go fishing and catch a turtle, I usually bring it home."
Sylvia Thompson said she was resting on her bed after work, watching TV, when her daughter CeCe Cole, 12, came running to tell her about the fire. CeCe said she heard a strange noise and looked out the window to see a man running away from the house. Then she smelled something burning.
"I opened the door and that's when I saw the fire and the smoke," she said.
CeCe couldn't identify the man and it was not immediately clear if he was connected with the fire. However, the noise gave the family warning to escape. After the flames were completely extinguished the scene was turned over to a fire investigator.