Volunteer firefighter loses Ranch Estates home in Thursday blaze

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Drew Franklin, assistant chief of the Lakeside City VFD, fights a blaze that claimed the home of Thomas Steidl, a member of the Arrowhead Ranch Estates VFD, Thursday morning.

Lonnie Hare, assistant chief of the Lakeside City VFD, fights a blaze that claimed the home of Thomas Steidl, a member of the Arrowhead Ranch Estates VFD, Thursday morning.

A volunteer firefighter is without a home after a Thursday morning house fire in Arrowhead Ranch Estates.

Thomas Steidl, a member of the ARE VFD, was inside his home at 904 Blue Heron Trail when the fire broke out sometime between 8 a.m. and 8:15 a.m. He and two dogs escaped without injury. A third dog is believed to have left the house, but has not been found. Robbie Steidl, Thomas’ wife, was not at the home when the blaze started.

Cause of the fire has not been determined, but appears to have started near the back of a house. The structure is a total loss.

Strong north winds and below freezing temperatures made battling the blaze difficult as fire spread from the house to an adjacent pasture area. While firefighters fought the house fire, brush trucks were called in to battle the grass fire and protect nearby residences.

Volunteer fire departments from Arrowhead Ranch Estates, Lake Arrowhead, Bowman, Jolly and Lakeside City responded to the fire, while the Wichita Falls Fire Department arrived with a brush truck.

A representative of the American Red Cross was on scene to provide assistance. Steidl will stay with family members.

Editor’s Note: Lakeside City Assistant Chief Lonnie Hare was misidentified in the original photo caption, and has been corrected. We regret the error. 

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Pioneer Sentinel

The Pioneer Sentinel is an online newspaper designed to deliver the news of Clay County, Texas, in a concise and community-friendly format.

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