Tragic end after kitten saves Forest Park family-of-six from devastating fire

‘She’s definitely here in spirit. She’s loved.’
Published: Mar. 10, 2023 at 10:45 PM EST
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CINCINNATI (WXIX) - A Forest Park family says they owe their life to their kitten, who warned them of the fire that would eventually destroy everything they owned.

Allysa and Marc Hall were in bed at their home on Imprint Lane early Saturday morning when Nina, the kitten they got three months ago, caused a stir.

“At 5 a.m., Nina woke us up,” Allysa said. “Our kitten jumped on the sheets, like all of a sudden I wake up and she’s in my face.”

Allysa says she went to put Nina outside their door, but when she came back, she noticed the smell of smoke.

Marc says the flames started up about an hour after he tried to start the hot water heater.

“Black smoke... I couldn’t see,” Allysa said. “And then I’m yelling for everyone to get out... All in our pajamas, no shoes, no nothing... It’s fight or flight.”

The couple and their four young children escaped the flames barely in time. Allysa says Nina got outside with them too. But some time later, she says, after crews put the flames out, there was no sign of her.

“She somehow made it back in the house, made it up to the kids’ room, and that’s where she passed away,” Allysa said. “I fight myself all the time…like Allysa, why didn’t you just grab her? I play tug of war… you had the babies in your hand. Like, why would she go back inside.”

The family had just paid off the home, and they didn’t have insurance. They’re currently staying in a hotel, according to a fundraiser created for them.

“It’s really starting to set in now that everything is gone,” Marc said. “It’s definitely a challenging time. We feel like, if it wasn’t for the cat, we may not have gotten out in time.”

The Halls vow to remember their short time with Nina.

“She mimicked each one of our children,” Allysia said. “Like my 5-year-old, rambunctious, off the walls.”

They plan to celebrate her life and heroics by planting a tree in their backyard, where they laid her to rest. They also plan to celebrate her memory every March 4th from now on.

“We’re thanking our kitten, Nina, and then we’re thanking God,” Marc said. “She’s definitely here in spirit. She’s loved.”

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