It was a scary morning for Carolina Panthers coach Ron Rivera and his family after his house caught fire around 4 a.m. this morning. According to WSOC-TV, Rivera woke up to the sound of smoke detectors blaring throughout his home on Heydon Hall Circle in Charlotte, NC.
Firefighters arrived on the scene to find billowing smoke and massive flames rising from Rivera’s home. The response was upgraded to a 2-alarm call because of the large number of firefighters it took to get the fire under control.
It took roughly 55 firefighters working for over an hour to put the fire out of the 7,066 square foot home. A hole was cut in the roof of the three-story brick house to get the fire under control according to ESPN.
Rivera, his wife, Stephanie, four other family members and the dog were able to escape the home without injury.
Rivera’s two brothers and their wives were visiting from out of town and had stayed over the weekend in order to attend the Carolina Panthers win against the Arizona Cardinals 27-16 in the NFC playoffs.
Due to the fire damage and smoke and water damage, Ron and Stephanie Rivera will not be able to live in their home for the short term. They were, however, able to return inside the home alongside firefighters to retrieve a few personal items as they plan to stay with a neighbor temporarily.
Charlotte Fire Capt. Rob Brisley spoke out to reporters regarding the incident, as per NFL, stating that all indications are this was an accidental fire, and most of the damage was sustained to the roof and attic area.
“It’s a busy week ahead for the city of Charlotte, including this family, who is devastated by the fire. Anytime you are faced with a fire and your family is displaced it is significant for the homeowner and it is significant for the family. We are just grateful that there are no injuries.”
Rivera stated, “I’m OK. Everyone is fine. Thank you, guys.”
Coach Rivera bought the home in April 2011, shortly after becoming the head coach for the Carolina Panthers. When asked about his house being damaged by the fire, Rivera responded simply by saying, “You know what they say, we’re rebuilding.”
There will certainly be much weighing on Coach Rivera’s mind this weekend as the Panthers make the long trip to Seattle to face the Seattle Seahawks in a second-round playoff.
All this falls on the heels of the Carolina Panthers quarterback Cam Newton luckily surviving a major car accident last month in which he sustained two fractures in his back.
Rivera will address the media Monday afternoon with more details on the fire and his plans in the days ahead.
Photo Credit: WSOCTV.com