SEYMOUR, Ind. (WDRB) -- A scary morning for a Seymour, Indiana police officer as his home goes up in flames.

Fire crews responded to North County Road 200 East around 3 a.m. 

The home is owned by Officer Gilbert Carpenter who is a 14-year-veteran of the Seymour Police Department.

Officer Carpenter, who is also a volunteer firefighter with Hamilton Township Fire, tells WDRB he woke up to what sounded like popcorn in his attic and instantly knew it was firewood stored up there that had begun to ignite.

“[I] got everybody out ... told them to get warm coats and get what you can grab and just stay out,” Carpenter said.

It took three fire departments just under three hours to put out the flames, but by then the home was destroyed. 

The officer’s wife, their two children, and pets were all out of the home safely before the roof began to collapse.

“I think God was really watching over us and helping us,” Carpenter said.

Now, Carpenter’s co-workers have set up a GoFundMe page to help get the family back on their feet. Clothing has also been donated and money has been dropped off at the police station to help.

“Basically we’re a family,” says Cpl. Devin Cornwell, who started the page.  “As a police department you always try to come together when you can and be there for one another. There’s a lot of things that come on through this job and you need the support and this is definitely a big one that comes through.”

Officer Carpenter is part of the Seymour, Indiana DARE program and spends much of his time working with young people.

He was most recently involved with the Shop with a Cop program, helping buy children presents for Christmas and now a community is helping him.

The officer and his family will be staying with other family members for the time being.

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