Veteran Joe Devine knows about loud explosions after serving in Afghanistan, but the latest boom to rock his ear drums created a close call for his family at their Apple Valley home when lightning sparked a gas line fire.
At 11:15 p.m. on Sunday, most of the neighbors thought the storm had passed -- but they were wrong.
"I would say it shot me about 3 feet out of bed," recalled Devine.
Lightning struck a tree in Devine's front yard, leaving a scar in the bark -- but the current didn't stop there. Instead, it hit a utility line that lead to the gas meters at Joe's home on 131st Street Court and another home two doors down.
Explosions rocked each house, and were followed by ferocious flames.
"The flames themselves shot way up," Devine recalled.
In fact, they were shooting right into the bedroom belonging to Devine's 7-year-old son, Nicklaus.
"Nick reacted real fast -- jumped into his mom's arms and she got him out right away," Devine told FOX 9 News.
Thankfully, everyone in both homes got out safely. Apple Valley firefighters extinguished the flames and CenterPoint Energy cut off the natural gas. Yet, Devine says the soldier in him may have reacted a little too quickly.
"I realized I was wearing nothing but underwear," he admitted.
Yet, the viral video of Devine surprising his daughter after returning from Afghanistan in March shows that this veteran does not need a reminder of what really matters in life -- even if he got one last night anyway.
"The house, I can replace that -- but I can't replace my kid and wife," he said. "That's what's most important."