Fifth grader escapes house fire after 'Survive Alive' program

MILWAUKEE (WITI) -- Fifth-grader Amaya Genett had no idea she'd have to escape a house fire when she stayed home sick from school on April 16th.

"I am very proud of Amaya, like extremely proud," said her mother, Melissa Genett.

The Genett's south side home caught fire while Amaya was in her bedroom.

"I went to go by the door and I could hear crackling and all that, then I went and touched the door and it was hot so I was gonna hide under the bed but I didn't, then I looked and saw I had a window so I just acted real fast before it even came in," said Amaya.

Just a few months earlier, Amaya's class had gone through the Milwaukee Fire Department's "Survive Alive" house. The department has used the simulated fire program to train over 350,000 MPS students in the last 20 years.

"When I was in the room, the room got smokey just like they did at the Survive Alive house. We had to touch the door and everything so I hurried up and did what I was taught," said Amaya.

"It's reaffirming and we want to celebrate that," said Milwaukee Fire Chief Mark Rohlfing. "We want to let people know that fire safety is important. When the children come home, parents need to listen to them and encourage them ask them about the day."

Amaya knew she would be honored at school on Friday, June 7th, but she didn't know it would literally be her day.

"I, Tom Barrett, Mayor of the City of Milwaukee, do hereby proclaim today, Friday, June 7th, 2013 to be Amaya L. Genett Day in the City of Milwaukee," announced Mayor Barrett.

Amaya had a short message for the City of Milwaukee on her special day, "Thank you and keep safe."