‘Everything’s gone’: Local mother talks about escaping massive fire that destroyed 16-unit apartment building

HOUSTON — Multiple families are left with nothing after massive flames consumed an entire 16-unit apartment building Monday morning in the Willowbrook area, according to the Houston Fire Department.

Investigators said nine local fire departments responded to the Cornerstone Village Apartments in the 14100 block of Cornerstone Village Drive around 2 a.m.

Residents watched in horror as firefighters worked to quickly extinguished the flames, which were contained to one unit before spreading to other buildings in the complex.

One woman — the mother of a 10-year-old with autism and a 5-year-old — claims her family was awakened by the smell of smoke. The mother said she, her husband and their daughters were fortunate enough to make it out of their second-floor apartment safely.  She stood outside the building in tears, clinging to her youngest child.

"I worked hard for everything in that house," the mother said. "It's just the starting over— not knowing where to go."

No injuries or missing persons have been reported, officials said.

The cause of the fire is still under investigation.

"It just hurts," the woman said. "I feel for everybody. We all work hard, we go to work everyday and take our kids to school today— and everything is gone. Everything is gone and we don't even know why. I don't even understand."

The following images were taken at the scene: