Selfless mother dies a hero after saving husband from house fire

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A selfless mum saved her dementia-stricken husband in a house fire before losing her own life.

Melanie Aisbett, aged 62, screamed for husband John to escape the blaze and wait outside, but she became trapped as the roof of the house collapsed. The property in Withernsea, East Yorkshire, was engulfed and Melanie was unable to make it out.

Melanie’s daughter Rebecca Aisbett, 39, said the woman was a “carer until the end”.

John, 70 and who has vascular dementia, remains in hospital 10 days after fire, which happened on Saturday, March 11.

Rebecca said: “Our lives completely stopped on March 11. My mum was absolutely off her rocker but the most loving, fantastic, supportive woman you’d ever meet.

“I want people to remember her for the special person she was, she has left a big hole in all of our lives. She wasn’t just a mum to me, she was my best friend, and now I need her the most, she isn’t here to tell me what to do.”

John and Melanie had been married for 44 years, Hull Live reports. 

Rebecca became aware of the fire after a police officer knocked at her door.

“The first I heard of what happened was from a former neighbour of my parents, who messaged me to ask how they were doing after the fire,” Rebecca said.

“After reading that message, I saw a police car outside my house, and instantly knew what they were going to tell me. I collapsed when I heard the news that my mum didn’t make it, and then that my dad had been taken to hospital.”

Paying tribute to her caring mother, Rebecca continued: “My mum was a housewife in her later years, and always looked after me and my dad because I have multiple sclerosis and he has vascular dementia.

“She was truly a carer until the end because I found out she saved my dad’s life by screaming as loud as she could for him to get outside. My dad tried to help and said he would come and help her but she told him to go.

“I believe she was trapped as the roof collapsed, and the smoke got to her. The last thing she did was make sure he got out, and many people have called her a hero for what she did.”

John is due to move into a care home because his house, with the neighbouring properties, has been condemned.

“Because of his dementia, he needs to be reminded of mum’s passing so his heart breaks over and over again. He lays his head on me and sobs,” Rebecca said.

To relieve some pressure from the family, Rebecca’s friend, Christina, has created a Go Fund Me to help with funeral costs for Melanie and a memorial plaque in her name. Any other funds will go towards helping John rebuild what has been lost.

Christina wrote: “The house fire has left John Aisbett with absolutely nothing, only the clothes on his back. This page is to help them regain and rebuild what has been lost.

“This is also to get a memorial plaque for Melanie, so family, friends and loved ones have somewhere to go and see her, and talk to her, in the bad and good times ahead. Please donate what you can and help regain what this family has lost. Thank you all in advance for all your help and support in this tragic time.”

The horrendous tragedy has turned Rebecca’s life upside down and her plans to get married this year have been postponed. She hopes she can navigate her way through this difficult time, supported by her remaining family and friends.

“I have never felt so lonely in a room full of people,” Rebecca admitted. “I don’t know what I would have done without my family and friends rallying around me.”

An inquest into Melanie’s death is expected to take place later this year.

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