Horton woke up to the smell of smoke Sunday morning around 3:00 a.m. and rushed her family out the door.
“The smoke was so dark you couldn't see anything coming down the stairs,” she said.
Minutes later her home was engulfed in flames. She said she feels lucky she woke up at all.
“Smoke detectors didn't go off,” Horton said. “The ones next door went off. And that's when I heard so mine didn't go off at all.”
The apartment manager said the alarm system was working properly and he will even help the victims of Sunday morning's fire get on with their lives.
“We do have other apartment complexes available here,” said Antonio Brooks, apartment manager. “We'll make sure we provide them in a timely manner another place.”
Left over from the blaze are gutted homes and the short-lived memories of this year's Christmas. Despite the shock most families went through Sunday morning, it was not the first time the complex saw a massive fire.
The River Village Apartments have seen three fires in the last three years.
Mark Johnson, a resident and former maintenance man for the complex has seen them all.
“I used to work here and the apartment up there caught on fire one time,” Johnson said. “And that apartment over there caught on fire once before.”
Johnson said he has heard complaints of electrical problems over the years.
“When you got problems, lights flickering and wiring problems that's something very serious,” Johnson said.
Horton said something needs to be done so that others families don't suffer the way hers did.
“Hopefully they tear them down,” she said. “It's no good. Probably an electrical problem, they need to tear them down.”
Despite losing everything the day after Christmas she feels lucky to have her family.
“Everybody's alive, living you know,” Horton said. “That's material things I can get that over. But as long as I got my kids out and everybody's okay.