Pregnant woman hurt in Las Vegas fire grateful for baby’s health
Since Saturday, DeJoy Wilson has been hospitalized at Sunrise Hospital and Medical Center with a broken back, broken ribs and other injuries.
Updated December 23, 2019 - 7:56 pm
DeJoy Wilson said she doesn’t need anything for Christmas.
“I didn’t lose my baby. I didn’t lose my life,” said the 23-year-old pregnant woman, who fell two stories as she escaped the downtown Las Vegas apartment fire that took six lives early Saturday.
After she exited through the window of her third-floor apartment, her hands slipped from the knotted bedsheet her husband, 29-year-old Johnathan Wilson, had fashioned into a rope. She fell to the ground, landing on her back.
Since Saturday, she has been at Sunrise Hospital and Medical Center with a broken back, broken ribs and other injuries. The couple thought DeJoy, who is three months pregnant, had miscarried Monday morning when she began to bleed.
“The baby’s heart is beating, and I should be OK,” said DeJoy, who graduated in 2014 from Rancho High School and worked as a hairstylist before her pregnancy.
The couple met in San Bernardino, California, got married in June at a Las Vegas wedding chapel, moved to Dallas and then, when DeJoy became pregnant, returned to Las Vegas to be closer to family.
They rented a unit at Alpine Motel Apartments because at $700 a month, it was affordable, DeJoy said in an interview from her hospital room.
“It was ours,” she said.
The apartment had bedbugs when they moved in, Johnathan said, but he “thought it was safe to live there.”
Early Saturday the couple had tried to escape to the roof of the apartment building, but the door from the stairwell was locked, he said. Thick smoke kept them from going down the stairwell to the ground floor.
After his wife fell to the ground, Johnathan dropped from the window of their apartment to an air-conditioning unit, then jumped to the ground. On Monday, he played for a reporter a video clip that shows a blurred figure jumping to the ground and then waving his arms and screaming for assistance.
“He thought I was dead,” said DeJoy, who was unconscious after the fall.
Johnathan has not sought medical assistance, though his neck and shoulder have hurt since the fire. He instead has focused on his wife.
“I thank him for that, but I just want to make sure he’s OK, too,” she said.
Authorities investigating the fire have not allowed residents to return to the building. The couple do not know whether they’ll recover the wedding rings they left on a table, documents, baby clothes and other possessions.
On Saturday, the couple did not know if they’d ever see again their Chihuahua, Roxanne.
Johnathan, who was given about $400 by the American Red Cross, found the pet at a shelter and paid $180 to retrieve her.
“That’s my baby,” DeJoy said about the dog, who is staying with DeJoy’s grandparents, who live in Las Vegas.
The grandparents have invited the couple to stay with them in their one-bedroom Las Vegas home if need be once DeJoy is released from the hospital.
“If I have a roof over my head, my granddaughter will have a roof over her head,” said DeJoy’s grandfather Dantel Myers.
Myers, who was visiting DeJoy at the hospital Monday afternoon, said that after the events of recent days, he feels blessed.
“My great-grandbaby’s here, my granddaughter’s here,” he said. “What more can you ask for?”
Contact Mary Hynes at firstname.lastname@example.org or 702-383-0336. Follow @MaryHynes1 on Twitter.