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9-year-old Vancouver boy saved sister from falling tree during snowstorm

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Brady and Lainey McMullen. (KPTV) Brady and Lainey McMullen. (KPTV)
A look at the damage near the couch where the kids were sitting. (KPTV) A look at the damage near the couch where the kids were sitting. (KPTV)
The oak tree that came crashing onto their home. (KPTV) The oak tree that came crashing onto their home. (KPTV)
Part of the damage to their home. (KPTV) Part of the damage to their home. (KPTV)
The trunk that split in half. (KPTV) The trunk that split in half. (KPTV)
VANCOUVER, WA (KPTV) -

A 9-year-old boy in Vancouver is being credited with saving his little sister as an enormous oak tree came crashing onto their home during this week's snowstorm. 

“It just happened in a flash,” said 9-year-old Brady McMullen.

He was on the couch Wednesday morning enjoying a rare snow day at home with his little sister, 7-year-old Lainey.

They were playing games as their parents were just getting up.

“We started to hear just rumbling like an earthquake,” said their father, Tom McMullen.

“The roof was breaking,” Brady added. “I started to hear crashing and snow and branches falling on the roof little by little.”

The trunk of the tree – which the family estimated to be 200 years old – split down the middle. Half of the oak tree fell onto their home, while the other half fell onto a neighbor’s shed across the back fence, crushing it.

A person who was in the shed got out with only a few scrapes to the face.

In those precious few seconds, Brady grabbed Lainey and they ran for the entryway, where they were met by their parents.

“It was traumatic. You wake up and they’re screaming, my wife was screaming, so I just started screaming and I just thought the worst,” Tom recalled. “[We] yanked the front door open and the neighbors were there, we tossed the kids to the neighbors and then we got out with what we could.”

They were in their pajamas – out of their home of 6 years without so much as shoes.

Looking at the damage on the inside of the home, they realize how lucky they really were.

“One of the tresses just popped out of the nails and just came down like a guillotine,” he said. “It was puncturing the ottoman where they were sitting, so it could have been – it could have been pretty bad.”

There is so much weight on the home, the ceiling and walls are cracking in other rooms and the fire department says it isn’t safe for the family to be there.

Now, they’re staying with relatives in the area but there’s no telling how long repairs may take.

A friend has started a donation account in support of the family at: gofundme.com/tommy-mcmullen-navy-veteran.

“I’m just super proud that he, in those couple seconds, just grabbed her and ran,” Tom said of his son. “I’ve just never seen a tree this big split in half.”

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