Monday, March 12, 2012

Barn fire

12:14 AM
Our barn burned early Sunday morning.

Everyone was in bed at the House 'n Barn when a passerby pulled in the driveway blowing the horn and yelling, "Your barn's on fire!"

Betsy was the first one up. She grabbed the phone and called 911 as she raced to the goat barn. The passerby helped her pull the seven pregnant goats and the billy goat from the goat barn.

The rest of the goats, the horse, cow and sheep were housed in other parts of the farm. All of the chickens and turkeys, except five hens that showed up in our flowerbed this morning (one which managed to lay an egg in the driveway), were lost. Five of the cats, including one with singed fur, are hanging around and we expect a few more might crawl back home in the next few hours.

Julie and I got a call at midnight and we arrived a few minutes after the firetrucks. Three townships responded and they fought and controlled the blaze for six hours. The barn and surrounding outbuildings--milk house, goat barn, tool shed--were reduced to smoldering piles.

Lauren Mae's car was parked beside the fuel barrels. The inside is completely blackened. The ground is charred around the fuel barrels, but the gasoline and diesel fuel tanks did not catch on fire. When Mom called Julie, she described sparks flying toward the barrels. The wind was blowing that direction. She and Julie prayed that they wouldn't catch on fire. The first thing the firemen did (after driving the water truck into the strawberry bed where it got stuck) was spray the barrels with water. The barrels, and the fuel inside them, remained unharmed.

The most immediate concern is situating the goats who are due to kid in a few days, if not hours. After that, we will have to clean up. My brothers suffered considerable loss since their shop was in the east bay of the barn. Aaron lost thousands and thousands of dollars of tools. Welders, air compressors, drill press, air conditioning units, diagnostic equipment... Logan's four-wheeler and the rebuild engine for his tractor Allis were also completely destroyed. We don't even have a hand shovel to use to begin cleaning the mess. 

Our clothes smell like smoke. Our bodies are exhausted from a night of trauma. 

We are thankful, but also sorrowful. 

An excavator spreading smoldering ruins and hay

Lauren Mae's car beside the fuel barrels

Brian clearing a path to drive a pickup truck to haul water for his animals
A few of Aaron's hand tools recovered from the ashes


  1. We're so sorry to hear of your family's great loss!!! Our guys have many expensive tools too and can imagine what it would mean to lose them all suddenly. :(

  2. Wow! That is going to be different to see. I am glad that all people are okay and the gas barrels did not catch on fire.

  3. Oh I am so so sorry... oh what damage fires can do. Praise the Lord you were able to save your goats there. But the loss of the barn and the tools, and the trauma, it's an terrible terrible loss.

    I'm so very sorry, and am praying for you all.

  4. Oh Amy, I'm so sorry! Our prayers are with your family!

  5. Now it is 7 hens and one more singed cat came out too.

  6. Sorry Aunt Carolyn, I accidentally deleted your comment after I read it. I'm a bit spacey today.

  7. So sorry for your loss! We'll be praying for you all as you process the experience and recover.

  8. I am so very sorry, Amy! Though so thankful that you all are all right and that your goats and most of your other animals were able to be saved. Praying for you all as you recover from this and figure out what to do next.

  9. prayers. and hugs.

  10. WE heard about your loss and trauma from Bianca's Blog and are so sorry about this very difficult trial. Though I have never met you--my heart goes out to your family in this loss. Still I know that we have a Great God--Who will not allow us to be tempted above what we can bear--but will find a way of escape for us. He is also a great God "El Shadday" (the all sufficient One) who will meet your needs and provide for each of you--in these days to come. We will be praying for your family in these upcoming weeks--and may you find peace, comfort, and safety in Him. "The name of the Lord is a strong tower: the righteous run to it and are safe." Perhaps our family or our Bright Lights Group--here in Fenton---could help out in some small way in the near future. We would love to bless you and help out. May God be glorified in this--through your lives, your suffering, and your testimony. With Blessings and Prayers, Debbie