Families home safe after massive grass fire - KLTV.com - Tyler, Longview, Jacksonville |ETX News

Families home safe after massive grass fire

SMITH COUNTY, TX (KLTV)- An update on the Smith County fire that destroyed two structures Tuesday.

Officials say an electric problem with a pump jack at a nearby oil well started the fire.

People living near the fire off County Road 26 in Northeast Smith County were forced to evacuate their homes. Many of those people cannot believe their homes escaped the fire untouched.

Deena Knox was in Tyler when she got word of the fire and headed home to pack her belongings.

But, she couldn't get down her own street because the roads were already blocked.

"The first road we were like, 'ok yeah, we'll just go in the back road,' the second road. 'Oh my gosh!' The third road... It was a big let down...  'ok we are not getting to our house. We are not getting out animals.'"

Luckily Deena's husband was already there.

"My husband called me running through the house, 'what do I get, what do I get?' All I could tell him was, 'Pictures! Get the pictures.' Everything else is just an item it can be replaced.. Your furniture, your knick nacks, whatever they can all go, but some of those memories you have can never be replaced," said Deena.

Their neighbors, however, were not so lucky.

Becky Adams was till too shaken up to even talk about it.

She had many of her keepsakes stored in this mobile home.
Her wedding dress, her grandmother's homemade quilts and many photographs.
But Adams's home across the street was untouched.

"People are fortunate, you know. I've heard the same quote from two different people. They come to this house and say it looks like the hand of God was on it because the fire was just all the way around it but it didn't touch the house," said Smith County Fire Marshal Oren Hale.

"It was good news, it really was.. We all came home and I turned the water sprinklers on and stuff like that and you just kind of sleep like this, with one eye open, all night," said Deena.

Hoping that these fires come to an end soon.

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