Teenage girl dies in Dickson apartment fire

Photo: WKRN
Photo: WKRN

DICKSON, Tenn. (WKRN) – A teenager died in a Dickson apartment fire early Tuesday morning.

Thanks to a brave police officer, the moments leading up to that tragedy are now clearer.

Officials told News 2 a fire call went out at 2:30 a.m.at the Sam’s Townhomes on Spring Street. Sgt. Jerry Sumerour was around the corner and quickly went to the scene.

Nadia Garcia (Photo: WKRN)
Nadia Garcia (Photo: WKRN)

RELATED: 1 dead, 2 injured in Dickson townhome fire

His arrival was caught on dash cam video and shows flames and smoke swirling around the building.

In the footage you can hear the intensity in the sergeant’s voice as he asked if everyone was out.

With fire trucks arriving in the background, the police veteran encountered chaos and told his partner to start getting people to safety. The duo banged on doors as groggy citizens stumbled into the front yard to safety.

At one point, there was thick, choking smoke and you can hear someone coughing.

The fire department was soon on the scene and all emergency crews worked together to save lives.

Sadly, the fire in apartment No. 9 was too much and it claimed the life of teenager Nadia Garcia.

Two days later, a memorial was setup outside her door with balloons and a heartfelt note written in Spanish by her sister.

Only God knows why he took you so soon from this world. Not  only are you my friend, you are my sister. That is why the pain of your departure is so immense. If you can hear me in this moment, please ask God to give me some consolation. I will miss you very much and you will always be in my heart. I love and miss you so much, Nadia. See you soon.”

Jennifer Carney was one of 50 residents who was forced to move after the fire. The mother of two says the images of that night will haunt her forever.

“Screaming… I couldn’t imagine losing my child like that. They were down on the ground screaming, ‘My baby, my baby.’ It’s hard to think back on it,” explained Carney.

A benefit account has been set up at TriStar Bank for the Garcia family. Donations can be dropped off at any bank location or mailed to 719 East College Street Dickson, Tennessee 37055.

The cause of the fire is still under investigation by the state fire marshal’s office.