Mother Copes with Pain After House Fire Claims Life Of 11-Year Old Son

By: Dave Byknish Email
By: Dave Byknish Email

An 11-year-old boy from Dooms is dead after being trapped in his room while his house was on fire.

Dustyn Gibson had just started classes at Wilson Middle School. When he wasn't at school, Dustyn liked to do magic and had just started getting into drawing.

Like any mother, Michelle is proud of her boy.

"He's really smart. Getting straight A's and B's already. He was offered scholarship programs and everything because he's so smart," she said.

Early Sunday morning, a fire that Michelle thinks might have been caused by her baseboard heating, started under her five year old son's bed.

"He just started screaming mom, get up. And he was smart enough to pull his door shut," she said.

Smoke alarms that Michelle tested only last month, never went off. Dustyn didn't have a warning that the house was on fire.

"He was upstairs in that room," she points. "We were yelling for him and all he kept saying was, mama, mama, I can't breathe, mama."

As Michelle tried to find Dustyn through thick black smoke, a moment of relief turned into a mother's nightmare.

"I kept hollering for him. I thought I heard him coming down the steps but he never came down."

Emergency response teams arrived, but they say the fire had too much of a head start. No one had remembered to call 911 as they frantically tried to get Dustyn free. It took roughly half an hour to get the fire under control.

But it was already too late.

On Sunday night, a mother will be surrounded by friends and family trying to piece it all together.

She knows, she did all she could.

"We tried to get him out," said Michelle as she began to cry.

Family and friends of Michelle are asking that support and condolences be directed to 473 North Bath Ave. in Waynesboro or the Little Caesars Pizza in Waynesboro. is happy to provide a forum for commenting and discussion. Please respect and abide by the house rules:

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