x
Breaking News
More () »

'The house imploded on us:' Couple survives explosion at their Heather Gardens duplex

Jo Ann Greer and Mike Hogg were in their home when it exploded Friday night in Heather Gardens. They lost their home, but are grateful for their lives.

KUSA — A little after 4 p.m. on Friday, Jo Ann Greer said a neighbor knocked on her door. She had a warning about a gas leak at Country Place 4 in the Heather Gardens community where they both lived.

About an hour later, her home exploded.

“It was like everything went up, and everything came down, and the house imploded on us," Greer said.

RELATED | Remembering Carol Ross, a victim of the Heather Gardens explosion

She was in the bathroom, and her partner Mike Hogg was in the kitchen.

Hogg said he was thrown across the room and landed on his left side, breaking his shoulder, sternum, and a few ribs.

The two live in a duplex at Heather Gardens. Their neighbor was 82-year-old Carol Ross.

She was killed in the explosion, but somehow, Greer and Hogg got out alive. They believe it was Aurora firefighters from Engine 11 who saved them.

RELATED | The science behind a gas-fed fire

“I was yelling for help, and one of them heard me, and kept fighting fire in Carol’s house to allow someone to get us out," Greer said.

The Aurora Fire Department is still investigating what sparked the fire, but they say it was fueled by a gas leak.

Xcel Energy spokesperson Mark Stutz says a third party contractor cut into their natural gas lines twice last week in two different parts of the Heather Gardens community.

"Our natural gas lines were hit both on Friday night, the night of the tragedy obviously, with the death and the injuries, and it was also hit on Wednesday," Stutz said.

RELATED | Gas-fed fire, explosion at Heather Gardens in Aurora leaves 1 dead, 2 others injured

Comcast spokesperson Leslie Oliver says they hired a contractor called ICS Communications to put in the Xfinity fiber optic lines at Heather Gardens, and they started that work this summer.

Oliver could not say if ICS Communications was responsible for hitting the gas lines.

9NEWS called Director of Operations for ICS Communications Paul Vigil and he declined to comment.

Greer and Hogg attended a members only Heather Gardens meeting on Tuesday afternoon where residents had the chance to voice their concerns, but could not get many answers because of the on-going investigation.

RELATED | Email warned Heather Gardens residents of 'major gas leak' days before fire

The couple wants answers about why their home was destroyed and their friend Carol was killed.

But, they said they're also grateful to be alive.

"She's my partner and my best friend and we both came out of it," said Hogg. "We're here, and we're together, and that's all that matters."

Jo Ann Greer's daughter set up a GoFundMe for donations: https://bit.ly/2DBiJxv