Some people in Garretson no longer have a place to call home. Two homes were destroyed by a massive fire in the small town.
A backhoe tears apart what used to be a home. While crews tried to salvage what they could, what was left inside is gone, and all that’s left is heartbreak. It was an unforgettable battle for firefighters.
“This is my very first fire that this nature where it spread from one house to another,” Chief Mark Rozeboom said.
No was hurt during the fire. Rozeboom says the fire started at the north home, which received the most damage. At this point, they don’t know what started the blaze. Crews believe it then spread to the second home by a strong wind.
Fire fighters couldn’t get inside the home to get any belongings, but they did try to grab things that were in arms reach.
“Salvage quite a bit of stuff out of there. We actually did salvage her wedding ring that was in a medicine cabinet in the house so we were able to find that for her,” Rozeboom said.
The backhoe, which turned one home into rubble, was used to get to flames firefighters couldn’t reach with water.
“Couldn’t access the flames. They were underneath the roof line and things have collapsed on top each other. So we just had the backhoe come in and start tearing stuff apart so we could get to the root of the fire, the flames safely,” Rozeboom said.
Crews battled the heat themselves, getting checked by medics when they took a break. It was an exhausting day, and people lost their homes, but Rozeboom believes it could have been even more tragic.
“You’re never happy when you have a fire you have to put out but you’re always happy and the end of the day that everybody comes home safe and nobody got hurt so that’s a plus for us,” Rozeboom said.
Crews plan to work at the scene throughout the evening. Brandon and Valley Springs departments were also at the fire.
Those working hard are getting some help. Some Good Samaritans dropped off food and water to help out the firefighters who spent hours at the scene.