Medical student trying to pick up the pieces after apartment fire

Published: Sep. 18, 2023 at 6:24 PM CDT
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KANSAS CITY, Mo. (KCTV) - A woman is desperately trying to pick up the pieces after her apartment caught fire Wednesday in Kansas City -- destroying everything she owns.

On top of that, she’s a fourth-year medical student, and the deadline to apply for residency is just days away.

“It couldn’t be a worse time, truthfully,” said Hayley Lange.

Lange said she was about to go to bed in her third-floor apartment unit at the Retreat At Walnut Creek when her dog started frantically barking.

“Somebody knocked on my door,” Lange said. “I have a dog who luckily heard it and started barking, and when I saw no one was there, I started walking to my bedroom, and that’s when the smoke started billowing through the vents.”

She watched as the fire quickly destroyed her home and everything she needed to apply for residency.

“I lost everything, all of my clothing, my scrubs, my laptop, everything that’s necessary to be successful,” Lange said.

But she remains hopeful as she said she’s never felt so much support. “It’s been an overwhelming amount of love for me and my husband and dog,” Lange said. “People I didn’t even know were willing to give us a place to stay.”

Lange is also very thankful for the management staff at the complex, as she said they have become like family.

“They have been nothing but generous and helpful,” Lange said. “They are the ones who went back in with the apartment with us to salvage what we could. They truly love us.”

Officials are still looking into what caused the fire. But as for now, Lange said she’s not going to let this disaster get in the way of her accomplishing her dreams.

“I’m still hopeful to send my residency applications via some means or another,” Lange said.