CY-FAIR, Texas - Though being treated for Hodgkin's Lymphoma for a second time, cancer didn't kill Patrick Hamilton. Fire did. His mother, Christine, also died inside their northwest Harris County home just after midnight.
Patrick's dad was treated for smoke inhalation, but is expected to survive.
"The home owner that was able to get out was interviewed and asked about smoke alarms. He was disoriented at the time but indicated he wasn't aware of any," said Captain David Padovan, Cy-Fair VFD.
The fire's cause is not yet known, but Cy-Fair volunteer firefighters say initial evidence suggests the two-story home on Pepper Knoll Drive had no smoke alarms. Because of their warnings, sometimes smoke detectors make a life and death difference.
"First arriving units got on location within five minutes to find the fire was already through the roof coming out of two sides of the house already," officials said.
The two bodies were discovered on the first floor, but getting to them was difficult.
"Once they were able to get in to do a primary search, there was things inside the home that hindered their being able to move throughout the house freely," Padovan said.
Patrick was in his 20's and possibly bedridden. His mom was his primary caregiver.
"There were three occupants in the house. One was able to get out safely and two were not," Padovan said.
As the Harris County Fire Marshal investigates, this fatal fire reminds us all: every home needs a working smoke alarm.
Does yours have one?