They ran through the snow to a neighbour's house with no shoes or jackets, but a family with 13 children, ranging from four months to 20-years old, are all well and safe after their house burned late Sunday afternoon.
Jakob Bool says his family went to church in the morning and then had a big family lunch at home. Bool notes the oldest children went to a youth event and he planned to take a few of the other children ice skating later in the afternoon.
Bool says around 4:00 p.m. he moved one of his vehicles from the driveway to the garage and was going to do a few more things around the house before going ice skating. About half-an-hour later Bool notes his children were telling him there was smoke coming through the garage door and into the house.
"My wife ran to the door and opened the door and there was already heavy, black smoke. She closed the door and at that time I ran to the door and opened the door. I felt that black, heavy smoke and I felt right away that it was really hot. Automatically I opened the garage door and I stepped inside the house and I said to everybody to get out of the house."
Bool says it was at that time he started to feel panic and phoned 9-1-1. He recalls telling them his house was burning and then dropped the phone and knew he didn't have time to pick it back up so he exited the house with his family.
He notes it has been a difficult time for their family with their son dying in a collision in November and now their home burning. Bool says it's hard to know what to think but he's glad his family is safe and the support from neighbour's has been beautiful.
Bool says they do have house insurance and are currently staying at his brother-in-law's before moving to a home they found to rent in Kleefeld later in the week. He adds they are taking things step-by-step figuring out their next move as they go along. Bool notes his children are currently not attending school, but is hoping to send them back shortly.
"The younger one, [the four month old], is probably not really understanding but everybody ran without shoes, without jackets in the snow when the house was burning. So, I think that's going to stay in their minds for awhile."
Bool says if the fire had happened at 3 a.m. it could have ended very differently.
A GoFundMe page for the Bool family has been set up. According to the GoFundMe page, clothing and other donations can be brought to 13 Sterling Drive in Mitchell.