Apex apartment fire leaves extensive damage, no injuries and possibly forces missing pet to flee

APEX, N.C. (WTVD) -- The gutted apartment unit that got the worst of an early Saturday morning fire on Cassowary Lane in Apex looks even scarier when you approach its smoldering ruins.

"I was in the shower, and I could smell some smoke, and my phone was ringing back-to-back-to-back! It turned out my boyfriend Ryan was calling me," said Brooke Farwell, whose apartment is adjacent to those with the worst damage. "I threw some clothes on real quick, grabbed my wallet and got out of there with my dog."

Farewell's neighbor Zane Greenwood escaped too, wearing pajamas after his friend Brenner Holmes also noticed signs of a fire nearby.

"Something smelled odd, and so I ran outside, I looked and saw smoke and flames," Holmes said. "So, I ran inside and told him, you gotta get out of the shower! We gotta get out of here."

Both men are missionaries who are unconcerned about the possible loss of their possessions left inside to fire, smoke and water damage.

"It's just worldly stuff. I know that more importantly we're safe, and that God is with us. He protected us all, and that's all that matters," said Greenwood. "We have some other missionary friends that we'll stay with."

"I mean, it could have been a lot worse. It could have destroyed my entire side. The people that are involved, God bless them. I hope that God looks over them during this time," said Farwell considers herself fortunate, too.

A short walk away from where they stood is the apartment where they believe the fire started. Investigators have not confirmed the source of the fire and are working to determine the cause. But the woman who lived there with her two cats are worried. She watched as EMS workers gave her cat Aura, oxygen from a tiny mask while swaddled in a blanket. Firefighters searched the ruins of the apartment for the second cat but told her they found no sign of it there.

The missing cat's name is Onyx, described by friends of the worried owner as small, black and unchipped. Anyone who has seen the cat is asked to contact Apex authorities.

The Red Cross is helping those displaced by this fire who have nowhere else to go.
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