ONLY ON: Woman meets the stranger who saved her family of four from a New Year’s Day house fire

ONLY ON: Bonded by fire

Oakleaf, FL. — Two strangers are now forever connected, after a house fire claimed one family’s home.

The Banks family lives in the Oakleaf area and awoke to chaos on New Year’s Day.

Action News Jax first told you two weeks ago, when the blaze destroyed the family’s home.

Content Continues Below

Thankfully, the family of four was untouched.

Clay County Fire Rescue said the fire was started by fireworks thrown in the trash inside the garage.

The Banks were asleep at the time, but a woman named Bernice (she did not want to share her last name) happened to be driving by at the time of the fire.

She stopped her car, ran up to the home, knocked on their door and waited for everyone to get out safely.

Now, two weeks later, Action News Jax reporter Meghan Moriarty organized a meet-up for the two.

“Thank you so much for stopping at my house,” Pam Banks said, embracing Bernice.

“When I saw that house, I was like ‘oh my God,’” Bernice said. “I got to get them out. I got to get them out.”

Bernice said she was knocking and ringing the doorbell, but it took a second knock to wake the family up.

“That’s when your husband came out,” Bernice said “I was like you’ve got to get them out there’s a fire.”

These two women now share a very special bond.

“My heart was just beating so hard,” Bernice said. “It was just like I just need to get you out.”

“Yes and you did,” Pam said. “We thank you so much. Thank you so much.”