The 55-year-old wife of councillor Alan Lawes is recovering in hospital after breaking both feet in a dramatic leap to safety after her house went on fire.
Dee Lawes jumped from a first floor window on to a concrete pavement when she became trapped in a smoke filled bedroom in Boyne View, Johnstown on Monday night.
Her husband Alan, an Independent member of Meath County Council, revealed just how lucky she was.
‘When the smoke woke her she first tried to get out the bedroom door and was beaten back by the flames so she immediately slammed that door shut and went to the window and jumped.
‘The fortunate thing was that a few weeks ago that window was broken and wouldn’t open but we had a man round to fix it last week only for that I dread to think what would have happened.
‘One of our neighbours heard the alarm going and looked out to see Dee in a heap on the concrete and thought she had tripped on the doorstep so she ran out to help and the first thing Dee said was can you save my dogs?
‘The dogs were in the kitchen downstairs and for some reason, the fire which started in the hot press contained itself upstairs so the neighbour could get the dogs out.
‘Dee’s legs are too swollen to be operated on just yet and she was given the choice of going home until the swelling went down but decided it as safer to stay in the hospital.’
Ironically Alan who is regarded as a champion for homeless people in Meath now finds himself homeless and looking for somewhere to rent.
He said, ‘It is funny how it works out I am actually considering buying a mobile home I’d probably get my money back on that when my house is repaired.
‘Look bricks and mortar can be fixed it’s just great that Dee’s quick thinking and bravery saved her life.’