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12-Year-Old Suffers Second And Third Degree Burns Participating In Fire Challenge

While most children are readying themselves for back to school, Brandi Owens will be with her daughter Timiyah Landers inside of a Washington intensive care unit.

Owens said she left her kitchen Friday morning (Aug. 17) after making pancakes for Timiyah and her two friends. Shortly after, while laying in bed with her fiance Marquell Sholar they heard a loud pop and then Timiyah came running down the hall screaming.

She “looked like a fireball,” Owens said. “She was yelling, ‘Help me.’ ”

Owens tells The Washington Post her daughter was on fire from her head to about her knees. Sholar quickly threw cold water on Timiyah while simultaneously attempting to get her into the bathtub. Owens without thinking said she tried to pull her daughter’s clothes off her, which made her burn her own hands.

“I was reaching through the fire,” Owens said, adding that she didn’t even realize she had burned her hands. “It was like a reflex. . . . I didn’t even feel the fire, I was just saving my daughter.”

The couple put out the fire and drove five minutes to the nearest the hospital where her daughter will remain as she recovers. Timiyah reportedly suffered second and third-degree burns covering half her body after participating in the viral “fire challenge.” The challenge involves placing rubbing alcohol on a part of your body, setting it fire and filming it.

Owens said she never heard of the dangerous viral challenge but videos of teens setting themselves on fire began appearing on social media four years ago, with many suffering severe burns. Timiyah is now hooked up to a ventilator and is being fed through a tube. Owens said one of her daughter’s friend tried the challenge at home and only sustained minor burns and brought it to Timiyah’s attention.

“They weren’t expecting it to go that way,” she said. “It was just a challenge, so it’s a lesson learned for all of them.”

While her daughter is wrapped in bandages, Owens is thankful she was home when the fire happened. “If we weren’t home, she’d have died,” Owens said. “Those kids wouldn’t have known what to do, but to sit there and let her burn. It’d have been pretty much over for her.”

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