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Groves fire destroys apartments
GROVES- by Haley Bull
A fire at a Groves apartment complex displaced ten families overnight Friday.
First responders got the call around 8 p.m. Friday to the fire in the 5800 block of West Jefferson Drive and worked until about 4 a.m. putting out the flames and hot spots.
No one was injured, but homes were destroyed.
Saturday morning, residents of the 12-unit complex dug through the piles of debris and broken glass, a collapsed roof and floors covered in foam and water.
"It's a reality check today," Bonita Fischer said.
Fischer lives at Ashlyn Park Apartments. Her first floor unit was badly damaged by the fire.
"An inferno. I mean when was all going at the top at the same time, the flames were high and it was just, I don't know any other word to use for it," she said.
Groves Fire Chief Dale Jackson said the fire started in the attic and quickly spread to the apartments below.
"Got the kids. Literally walked out with what we were wearing," Luz Barragan said. She lives with her family in a second floor apartment.
"Everything was up in flames, like, it was just really fast," she said.
The flames completely destroyed her apartment.
"My two little boys, all their Christmas presents, everything, it's just gone," Barragan said.
A few Christmas ornaments were left scattered on the ground while families tried to salvage what was left.
"I was looking for just water damage this morning," Austin Langley said. "I didn't realize it took everything."
Like many other residents, Langley spent the morning digging through what was left of his apartment.
"Everything is destroyed, the walls, the cabinets," Langley said.
Despite losing almost everything, some of the residents still feel lucky.
"I'm just glad to be alive," Langley said.
Emergency workers notified the Red Cross. The apartment complex is also providing alternate living arrangements.
The cause of the fire is under investigation.