Babysitter credited with saving twin toddlers from fire in Newnan

- A grandmother is calling a 17-year-old babysitter a hero. The family said she helped save her grandsons from a fire that destroyed their home.

It had been Tonya Cox’s home for about as long as Hailey Arnold had been alive. Inside at the time were many prized possession, but that which was most worth saving, her twin grandsons, made it out safe thanks to Arnold.

“It was just instinct. They're not even my kids and that was the first thing I could think of. It wasn't ‘grab my stuff’ or ‘grab the dogs’ or anything like that. It was ‘grab the kids and run,’” said Arnold.

Despite losing just about everything she owns in this world to a fire last week, Cox said she is blessed. Arnold was watching the twins while she ran to the store for diapers, and in that short amount of time, a fire broke out in the playroom.

“Words can't describe things turned to ashes that I didn't think would turn to ashes,” said Cox.

Despite the lost, Cox said she knows she can rebuild. She said this community has been amazing. Strangers have been coming by since the fire, dropping donations and even gift cards. She said what she really needs is a short-term lease, something three or four months for her and her grand babies.

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