Football teammates come to help after house fire


Courtesy of Alex Edjorian

The remains of the Edjorian family's house later in the day.

Everyone has woken up to a bad morning start: a car alarm from the street, barking dogs, thunder from a storm.

For sophomore Alex Edjorian, he woke up to smoke and fire at 3 a.m. on Sept. 3. Unknown causes started the fire in the family garage, quickly penetrating the walls. The flames eating way through the walls created a layer of black smoke pushing against the roof.

“A burst of flames comes straight out and the fire starts eating the top of the door,” Edjorian said,  recalling when he first saw the fire.

Evacuating onto the street, the family stood outside realizing one person was cornered by the flames. Not knowing his father was still inside, first responders quickly retrieved him from trying to hose the fire down himself. With all family members out of the house, multiple fire departments continued working on dousing the fire.

“From 3 a.m. to roughly 7 a.m, the fire department was at work and we were top priority so we had four different districts of fire trucks at our house,” Edjorian said after the chaos.

Looking at his childhood home the roof of the garage gave way, collapsing on itself from the damage of fire, it reignited three times from hot spots in the walls.

“Then, it started to eat the top of the garage, which is my brother’s and my sister’s rooms, and those collapsed down into the garage,” Edjorian said. “Next, it took the roof, sucked it in and made a big crater in the roof.”

A Facebook post and a few emails later, the PHS faculty and students immediately went to aid the family. Along with loving neighbors and other supporters, donations of gift cards, food and other items initiate the beginning of the family’s rebuild. Edjorian has also found comfort in his own teammates.

“They said ‘mind over matter’ all the time and they drilled that in my head, so I never really thought much of it, of my house burning down,” stated Edjorian.

His team and coaches are some of his biggest supporters in his difficult situation.

Varsity football coach Preston Jones is amazed and proud by the spirit of not only the teammates, but also the parents and staff. Jones sets a standard to ultimately build them stronger.

“This is how communities are ran as well; several different groups working together for the good of the groups,” Jones said.

Players of all teams came to help, despite not knowing the family or Edjorian directly.

Senior varsity teammate Cannon Stinchfield shared in helping his teammate’s family. “We get informed and it’s just like a community,” Stinchfield explained, “it’s a support system.”

The school spirit and sports rankings are not what set the campus apart. Campus relationships between students and staff show how exceptional Pumas are to other schools.

“It was heartwarming for everyone to come together as a community to come and help out one player out of the entire school of 3,500 students”.