Wednesday, June 22, 2011

Wallow fire

A couple months ago my grandparents needed a little extra help at home and my parents uprooted themselves and moved to Mesa to help them out. They are saints I tell you. They're back home and taking care of my grandparents in Snowflake now for the summer, but right before they returned home, the wild fires in northern AZ broke out on May 29th.

If you haven't heard about the fire, it's awful!  As of today, the wallow fire has burned 519,319 acres (click here for a day by day progression of the fire. It's incredible how quickly it spread and how long it's been going!) and is the largest fire in AZ ever recorded. It is 58% contained, so at least they're making some progress. My sister and her family were evacuated from their house in Eager for a week and went to my parents' house 100 miles away.  You could see the smoke plume from Snowflake that looks like an A-bomb went off, but at least they could breath.They're now back in their home. Her husband, Mark, is a forest ranger and was fighting a different AZ fire when it started.  He got home during the evactuation and has been working on forest recovery before he goes to fight the wallow fire. She said, " It was a little smokey for the first two days that we were home, but now you can't really tell the the forest is still burning.  Mark has been working 12-16 hours a day.  This week it hasn't been too bad.  He is mostly working on forest recovery right now.  I haven't been able to see any of the damages because the roads are still closed, but Mark says that some of the prettiest parts look really bad.  I'm just glad that most of the homes around here were saved.  The fire that is burning near Sierra Vista has burned around 60 homes.  It's so sad.  That was a beautiful place, too.  We use to picnic up that canyon."

I am so grateful for the men and women who are risking their lives, giving their time, and giving up their comfort to fight this beast.  Beside my brother-in-law, one of my best friend's father has fought it as well.

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