St Joseph, MO – A St. Joseph house explosion leaves a man homeless, and the family thanks a higher power for his walking out alive.

Rick Woolard was able to walk out of his house seconds before it completely burned to the ground.

“I was sitting down there watching T.V. and I heard one little boom and that was it, I called the fire department real quick,” he said.

He says the fire started late Tuesday evening, but luckily within seconds after feeling the giant jolt he was able to escape the flames.

“It was loud enough to knock the t.v. off the stand, and blow up 2-3 windows, and then from there on it was just smoke, it filled in the inside of the house real quick,” he said. Woolard`s luck continued, his mother`s house is next door.

Velma Woolard said, “All in all we`re fortunate, we`re very fortunate.” Woolard grew up in the house; his family owned the house on the 4300 block of 2nd street for six decades. “I walked out of there with my clothes on my back,” he said.

The Saint Joseph Fire Department believes a propane leak is to blame.

The family just recently filled the tank and turned on the furnace to prepare for winter. “It`s still intact, it`s sitting down there, and we just put 390 gallons of propane in it,” Woolard said about the tank.

Fire officials say the explosion blew off the basement walls. Now black rubble is all that remains of the memories and treasures the family compiled.

Fire officials say homeowners should have their plumbing checked and cleaned by a professional yearly to avoid the kind of explosion that happened to Woolard.