911 operator answers daughter's call about her house on fire

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Tuesday, January 10, 2017
911 dispatcher takes call from daughter that house is on fire
911 dispatcher takes call from daughter that house is on fire

MADISONVILLE, Texas (KTRK) -- A 911 operator in Madison County is being praised for how she responded to a call from her daughter about a fire that eventually burned down their house.

"She did an outstanding job. She did what she was trained to do," Madison County Sheriff Travis Neeley told Eyewitness News.

Layla Wray was the dispatcher on duty overnight last Friday. Around 12:20am, she got a call about a house fire.

Wray: "911. What's your emergency?"

Caller: "Mommy. Mommy. It's Cassidy. The house is on fire."

Wray's 14-year-old daughter was on the other end of the line. Also at the home were her son, husband and dogs. The teen told her mother the fire started on the back porch. At one point you can hear the teen crying.

Caller: "Mommy. It's going to burn us all."

Wray: "Alright. Alright. Calm down. Calm down. I've already got somebody en route. Okay? It's okay."

Wray, who's been on the job a year and a half, never broke down. The only time she went into "mother-mode" was when it sounded like her children were bickering.

Wray: "Y'all do not need to be fighting over this. There's other (expletive) happening."

The cause of the fire is still under investigation. The home was a total loss but everyone got out safely. Sheriff Neeley could not be prouder of how calmly she reacted.

"How many people can sit there and do this job and take a call from their own child? She did a fantastic job," he said.

Through Neeley, Wray declined an interview. Her husband told Eyewitness News they are still processing the devastation and trying to figure out what to do next. They are staying in a hotel. Wray is expected to be back at work later this week.