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Turley Residents Sift Through The Ashes From Tuesday's Fire

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Turley residents looking at the damaged caused by Tuesday's grass fire/ Turley residents looking at the damaged caused by Tuesday's grass fire/
Remains of an abandoned Turley home from Tuesday's fire. Remains of an abandoned Turley home from Tuesday's fire.
The remains of Loma McGee's home were still smoldering a day after the fire. The remains of Loma McGee's home were still smoldering a day after the fire.
Everything Turley resident Loma McGee owned is gone. Everything Turley resident Loma McGee owned is gone.

Dan Bewley, News On 6

TURLEY, Oklahoma -- Residents in Turley are trying to figure out what to do now after over a dozen homes were caught in the middle of Tuesday's grass fire.

There are no reports of injuries but 6 homes were damaged and 9 homes burned to the ground.

"I'm doing pretty good, just my life savings went up into smoke," said Turley resident Loma McGee.

McGee can do nothing now but talk with friends. The charred remains of her home are still smoldering after Tuesday's fire.

"What do you do now?" asks Dan Bewley.

"I don't know, I don't know, I really don't know," said Loma McGee.

SkyNews6 was first to capture images of the fire. Close to 200 acres burned, 155 firefighters from 10 different departments fought the blaze and 8 firefighters were treated for heat exhaustion. We're told they're doing fine now.

The fire destroyed buildings and forced a herd of horses to run for safety.

8/2/2011 Related Story: Residents Allowed Back After Fire Burns Several Homes Near Turley

Loma McGee's home had insurance on the trailer but everything she owned is gone, from her great-great grandmother's Bible to family pictures from the 1800s. She has no money to find a place to stay or purchase life's necessities.

"No savings honey; I don't have a penny," said Loma McGee.

"I woke up crying this morning but you got to do what you got to do, it's how things happen," said Turley resident Courtney Oates.

Oates lives close to Loma McGee.

Oates home is still standing but with fire damage on the outside and smoke and water damage on the inside she's not allowed to stay in it.

"There's a lot of emotion but you pick up and you go on. What else can you do?" said Courtney Oates.

Fire officials say the fire started near 56th Street North and Rockford but they may never know the cause.

Teams from the American Red Cross were out Wednesday morning assessing the damage. They'll help residents find a place to stay and work with them to get medications, food, or clothing.

Tulsa Red Cross damage assessment teams canvassed the area of Tuesday's fire in Turley and found:

  • 9 single-family homes destroyed
  • 1 single-family home with major damage
  • 1 single family home with minor damage
  • 2 mobile homes with major damage
  • 2 homes affected by the fire

Loma McGee appreciates the help and says, despite it all, she'll figure out a way to make it through.

"The trailer can be replaced but there's things that can't be replaced and I hate that," said Loma McGee.

The American Red Cross says for those interested in helping the folks here in Turley the best way to do that is through monetary donations. But if you do that make sure you note on your check it is for the Tulsa Area Chapter of the American Red Cross, that way the money stays right here.

Red Cross workers are at the Antioch Baptist Church at 110 West 56th Street North to meet with residents whose homes were damaged or destroyed by the fire.

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