Some Wildfire Evacuees Find Relief While Others Find Ruin Upon Return Home

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The Blowers house is two stories worth of wood nestled in a thicket of dry brush and trees. It's kindling for a wildfire.

Their address marker on Dawn Drive is one of dozens in Loma Rica that firefighters flagged during the 17,000 acre Wind Complex Fire -- a sign this family evacuated. The burn scar behind it spans the entire hill leading up to their home.

"Through this window over here we saw rolling flames coming up through the trees at us, and we just went, 'Ok whoa! We gotta go,'" said evacuee Jeff Blower.

Blower says the fire blustered through the neighborhood so ferociously, and crept down the ridge and surrounded their home so quickly, they thought for sure it would be a goner.

"There wasn't a second thought that anything was gonna be left up here," he said.

But it's still standing.

"My wife and I kinda feel like the hand of God came down and said 'not this one,'" Blower said.

He also believes his house is still standing thanks to firefighters who fended off the flames. And someone he knows is still standing because of  deputy who rushed to another address to rescue them.

"And when he got another one, he would get out and do a U-turn and go back and get another one, and he would do that all night long," Blower said.

But just beyond the Blowers home, there are many other stories of loss.

"I feel so bad for them," said Cindy Roberts.

Several of her friends lost their homes in the fire.

"We were all talking about how it was weird in the fire, how some things are left standing," she said.

To them, the erratic pattern of wreckage is heartbreaking.

Roberts has given one of her friends a home to stay in. And Monday, she was doing her best to rescue her cats.

"Just because we're neighbors. We all take care of each other and watch out for each other," she said.