Saturday, April 18, 2009

So Very Thankful . . . .


At about 5 a.m. this morning, I was awakened by flashing lights outside the window of the bedroom. When they didn't go away, I got dressed and went outside to see what was going on. The house two doors west of me was on fire! My neighbor, Cheri (she lives inbetween me and the house that was on fire), came out at the same time and we were completely stunned! First, let me say that thankfully all the people that lived there got out safe. It was one of the most incredulous things I have ever seen. The east side of the house was completing engulfed in flames with thick, black smoke pouring out of every window, soffit and roof vent. The street was filled with emergency vehicles and personnel. The fire department was in the process of hooking up the hoses, etc. so they had apparently just arrived. Within moments, the windows blew out from the intensity of the heat. With the source of new oxygen from outside, the flames grew even bolder.


Cheri has her boat parked between the houses so she let the firemen know that there was a boat close to the fire with gas in the tank. So, in addition to spraying water on the house, they also sprayed her side of the house/boat to keep the flames from spreading. Luckily, the ground was a bit damp so it helped to keep any embers from spreading the fire. Although it seemed like forever, they extinguished the fire within minutes. I was SUPER impressed by the efficiency and professionalism of Rockledge's fire and police departments! They made sure everyone was safe and stayed calm.


I have to say that my fire experience is pretty much limited to camp fires and fireplaces. It is the first time I have witnessed the power of flames that destroy. My heart goes out to my neighbors who lost just about everything. Witnessing this event has been really humbling . . . thinking about how your belongings can be gone in a little more than an instant. This morning I am so thankful for my family and all that I have. I realized how blessed I am to have so many earthly possessions but also realize EVEN MORE that the intangibles in my life are what truly bless me. My family, my faith, and my God can never be taken by fire or any other means.
In the pics below, you can see how devastating the fire was -- even the 2x4 frames were charred and destroyed. It is a complete loss . . . what wasn't burnt to a crisp was ruined from smoke. Again, I am so glad that everyone got out safely.

4 comments:

Kimberly said...

How horrible for your neighbors! I'm glad everyone got out okay. Very impressive, frightening pictures.

Janet said...

That is so sad. One of my close friends lost her home to a fire almost 2 years ago. It was very emotional for all of us helping her sort through mementos trying to salvage something.

Heidi said...

That is so scary. I hope they can find a few family treasures that somehow survived.

amber said...

Oh. My. Gosh. That is so scary. I am so glad that it wasn't you guys. I am also glad that everyone is safe!!