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Fundraiser held for family of 9-year-old rescued from Seffner fire

The local community in Seffner came together Saturday to make sure the family affected is able to get back onto their feet.

SEFFNER, Fla. — A family's life was flipped upside-down Thursday night after a house fire forced Hillsborough County deputies to smash a window to save a 9-year-old boy inside. The house was a total loss from the flames along with multiple cars.

The local community in Seffner came together Saturday to make sure the family is able to get back onto their feet.

The donation and fundraiser happened at the family's store called Florida Farmhouse Market, located at 1020 US-92 in Seffner.

After starting at 11 a.m., the fundraising event went all the way up until 4 p.m.

People were asked to bring pots, pans, dishes, silverware, bedding and towels. Gift cards for food and clothes were appreciated as well. Merchandise of Garfield wass being collected for Owen, who is a big fan of the animated cat.

"Please come out and support the family," a family friend wrote in a Facebook post.

Owen is recovering at Tampa General Hospital after being rescued from the house fire.

Karen McGinnis, his mother, told reporters at a news conference Friday afternoon that her son suffered second-degree burns on his face and right arm from the fire, along with smoke inhalation.

The child is currently "heavily" sedated and comfortable, hooked up to a ventilator, while hospital staff work to clean the wounds, McGinnis said.

Owen's father, Chris Ares, says the 9-year-old could possibly get off the ventilator by Tuesday.

"[Owen] is my little hero, my North Star, he's my fighter," she said. "I've taught him to fight and in fact, sometimes he fights too much."

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