Family of Five Loses Home, Pets in Fire

Chief: Outdoor Burning Re-Ignited, Reached Propane Tanks

SALINE COUNTY, Ark. - A Saline county family of five watched their home burn to the ground Wednesday. David Womack was back at the property, touring its charred remains Thursday.

It burnt the back part of the house mainly first and then it spread this way," Womack says. 

"Just out here just trying to find some things."

Womack showed us some of the family's keepsake items that looked untouched while most of their belongings were reduced to rubble.

"We found some things like [his wife's] Dad's ashes," Womack says.

"They were right there on the mantle where the American flag is that's burnt now."

The Womack family was at church when flames swarmed the house. David was making runs in the church van.

The home is located in the Salem community. Salem fire chief Gil Carpenter was one of the 40 firefighters who responded.

 "It's just been one of these weeks," Carpenter says.

Carpenter just got back from Houston after lending a hand to Hurricane Harvey victims. He says Wednesday's call at the Womack house came through as an explosion.

"The garage door was blown out," Carpenter says.

"The homeowner advised me that he had been burning previously in the daytime."

Womack added: "We were burning some brush and some other stuff back over that way."

Wind re-kindled the flames, which found their way to nearby propane tanks.

"I guess when the fire came through and hit them, "Womack says.

"I thought we put it out."

One of four dogs survived the fire. The Womacks are staying with nearby family, and David admits the blaze forced a change in behavior..

 "I'll tell ya I'll never burn anything outside again."

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