VIDEO: Santa Rosa neighborhood bands together to save homes from North Bay Firestorm

 

SANTA ROSA (KRON) — Santa Rosa’s Fountaingrove neighborhood was ravaged by the North Bay Firestorm.

This video shows some of the many homes there that burned to the ground.

But KRON4’s Maureen Kelly found one street that is still standing, thanks to a group of residents that banded together to keep their homes, and their neighbors’ homes, from being destroyed.

On Lake Park Court, neighbors on a cul-de-sac, and some other neighbors living on the street above, banded together to save approximately 22 homes in this area–not once, but three times over three days.

One neighbor up on Bicentennial Way, who owns a heavy equipment rental place, got a portable water tank and a pump up there. And along with another neighbor who’s a retired firefighter and a handful of homeowners, they ran water from a pool and beat back the fire burning on the hills around the area–until firefighters arrived to help up midday Monday.

“All the neighbors banded together and worked in teams, and they were running around, and we were all working as a team making sure that fires were being put out everywhere,” resident Pete Henderson said.

Ricardo Uribe had been away from his home when the fire destroyed other homes in the Fountaingrove neighborhood and threatened his property. But he jumped in to help when the hill at the end of the cul-de-sac ignited on Tuesday morning.

By then, the impromptu fire brigade used fire hoses left behind by firefighters to help squelch those flames, which threatened to take out the whole block and then some.

“If anything, we saved was probably the convalescent home back here because…the fire was starting again until we came in there with the hoses,” Uribe said.

Police came trying to evacuate the block again on Tuesday night when another fire that broke out to the east, but once again, the band of neighbors stayed behind and worked together to put out the fire until a strike team got there.

In the end, they saved their homes and homes of neighbors who evacuated the area.

And they made new friends.

“We lived here for 15 years and I really didn’t know the people behind us,” Uribe said. “Now, he’s my buddy. He’s my bosom buddy now.”

Friendships forged by fire, helping a stronger community rise from these ashes.

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