First Responder Called to Fire at Her Own Home That Left 2-Year-Old Son Badly Burned

·2 min read

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A North Dakota first responder was called to her own home for a fire that left her two-year-old son badly injured.

Shelby Jankowski was volunteering as a first responder in Enderlin, North Dakota, when the emergency call came in Tuesday afternoon that her son's mattress had caught fire, according to the Associated Press.

"I walk in the door and she says, 'That's my house. That's my son. I have to go,'" Tim Owen, Jankowski's emergency response partner, told KVLY-TV.

The cause of the fire has not yet been determined. The fire department did not immediately respond to PEOPLE's request for comment.

A GoFundMe set up for Jankowski's son Royce says the two-year-old sustained second-degree burns covering 34 percent of his body.

"I was hoping that everything would be ok. I was hoping that Royce would be ok," Owen said to KVLY-TV. "I was hoping that Shelby would be calm enough, it's her child."

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Owen told the news station that by the time he and Royce's mom arrived at the house, the fire had been put out and the toddler had been rescued.

The toddler and his mother were flown to a hospital in Minnesota for treatment, KVLY-TV reports.

"It hit the three big ones. Anytime a child is involved, anytime it's a friend and anytime it's a coworker," Owen said of the tragedy.

For now, Royce is sedated and intubated for smoke inhalation. He is scheduled for surgery on Saturday and again on Monday, KVLY-TV said.

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The family will be relocating to Minneapolis for the time being while Royce spends around eight to 12 weeks in the hospital for his injuries, according to the GoFundMe page. He will likely have to undergo skin grafts on one, if not both, of his arms and hands.

Loved ones describe Royce as "inquisitive, energetic and a bundle of energy."

"Royce loves Paw Patrol and is enamored with his sisters," the page says. "This two-year-old boy has the brightest pale blue eyes that melt your heart."