ELKMONT, Ala. (WHNT) — The night before Christmas Eve temperatures outside dropped into the single digits, and one Limestone County family’s attempts to keep warm may have led to them losing everything.

While many in the Tennessee Valley turned to their house-wide heater, those who didn’t have a working heater turned to a space heater to make sure they didn’t get cold. A fault in one of those space heaters is why one family says they lost everything. 

Tammy Scott says that a popping sound woke her and her family. By that time, their home of more than 40 years was full of smoke and their Christmas holiday was ruined. 

“It happened at four o’clock Christmas eve morning. I was with my husband and my nephew,” Scott said. “Something woke me up because I thought I heard three knocks on the door, but I guess it was the fire coming from the bathroom and stuff.” 

Scott told News 19 that the space heater was in the bathroom for extra heat on one of the coldest nights on record. But that space heater failed, and the house immediately went up in flames. 

“The smoke was already so thick that we couldn’t get anything out,” she said.  

The fire destroyed the Christmas tree, the presents and everything that the family owned. Scott says she tried to go back and grab the keys to her new car which was a present from her husband, to lift her spirits after losing her mother to a stroke just six months ago.  

“This is my first Christmas without my mom then we wake up to this and we lose everything we got,” she said. “It’s so unreal. We are seeing if we can get some help from anyone from somewhere because we don’t have anything.”

The Elkmont Fire Department said temperatures on Christmas eve morning were in the low single digits. The fire department said when they arrived the house on Pettusville Road was destroyed.  

Despite the losses, no injuries were reported as a part of the fire.