RIVIERA BEACH, Fla. - The mother of 57-year-old Anthony Scott says her son's death is a huge loss to the family and community.
Betty Scott says the family just celebrated his birthday on Thursday, and he was engaged to be married next year.
Riviera Beach minister Anthony Scott just turned 57 on Thursday, had his birthday dinner at the Cheesecake Factory, and got engaged October 8th.
The distraught mother is strong and says she wants to honor her son by telling the story.
Around 5 o'clock Friday morning, Betty Scott got a knock on the door that would break her heart.
"He told me point blank, which is the best way to tell a person, my son is dead," she recalled.
Anthony Scott was inside his home on W 37th Street in Riviera Beach when a fire broke out.
"Tony tried to put it out. That was his way, he thought he could do everything," said Betty.
Scott says her son was a minister and removed only two items from his home before going back in to try and put the flames out.
"Among all the things he could have took out of the house, he took his two bibles," said Betty.
She says her son did not come back out of the home a second time after being overcome by smoke. She says paramedics rushed him to the hospital where he died.
Neighbors are also having a hard time coping with what happened just a few feet behind them.
"It was very lucky a person was driving by because if they wasn't, the flames would have come to the front," said Glen Turner, a neighbor.
Betty Scott says her son loved God with all his heart and was popular in the Riviera Beach community, speaking at local churches and often having services at his home.
On her 80th birthday, October 8th, she says he proposed to his girlfriend and planned to get married next year.
Betty says she's received support from family and friends, but it's her faith that will heal a broken heart. She says the fire is being blamed on faulty wiring.
A local funeral home is accepting donations on behalf of the family to help with funeral costs. If you have anything to spare, you can contact the Brown Funeral Home at 561-533-5256.
Copyright 2011 Scripps Media, Inc. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten, or redistributed.
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