A Maine man accidentally torched his parents' home over the weekend while trying to exterminate ants.
Investigators with the state fire marshal's office said this week that 21-year-old Devon Doucette was trying to incinerate the ants with wooden matches when he inadvertently ignited combustible material that caused flames to rapidly envelope the Old Orchard Beach home.
While Doucette escaped with his life and his parents weren't home at the time of the blaze, three family pets weren't as lucky.
According to a GoFundMe page created by a friend of the Doucettes, two cats and a dog were killed in the fire.
"Sadly, the wonderful Doucette family had a house fire yesterday and lost everything, including their loving pets," the friend, Erica Hebert Albair, wrote as part of a plea to help the family with expenses related to the total loss.
The fundraiser was created Sunday with a goal of $10,000. By Monday, that amount had been surpassed.
According to Albair, the community has come out in force with not just money but also with everyday items the family will need as they pick up the pieces.
"I can't even begin to tell you the amount of item donations by so many people. So many people are beyond words about the generosity from all of you. The gratitude is undefinable," she wrote.
Doucette was treated for 2nd degree burns and smoke inhalation and released.
Investigators said he is unlikely to face charges.