'A Wall Of Flames:' Western Oklahoma Wildfires Devastate Homes

Fire raced across the land in western Oklahoma on Monday. The flames took down houses one by one.

Thursday, February 29th 2024, 5:51 am

By: News 9, Sylvia Corkill

More than 147,000 acres of land have been burned after wildfires ripped through parts of Ellis County this week, firefighters say.

“It was a wall of flames coming across, running eight feet high,” said Richard Mueller. 

Emergency officials shared that fires are unpredictable, and change course with the wind.  

“I was in Enid, and my mom just said the house was on fire,” said Nathan Ehrlich, fire victim.

“I know of six families that have lost homes,” said Kelly Witchey Safety Director of Ellis County.

Witchey was out fighting fires when the winds shifted. 

Within minutes with, her house, vehicles, and pets engulfed in flames, she focused on helping others.

“We have life we can rebuild it’s the Oklahoma standard,” said Witchey.

Richard Mueller did the same, “What was going through my mind is help my neighbors,” said Mueller.

With his pasture on fire, he guided volunteer firefighters down dirt roads.

The community banded together throughout the night and morning, “Everybody is reaching out,” said Witchey. “Everyone is waiting on insurance adjusters,” said Mueller.

Thankfully no one was killed in Monday night’s fire. But many livestock were lost.

News 9 Storm Tracker Marty Logan spent the better part of Monday helping residents to safety, “I enjoy doing this kind of stuff it’s in my DNA,” said Logan.

A former volunteer firefighter himself, and with three firefighters injured within 48 hours, Logan asks that folks remember the volunteers and donate.

“This is overwhelming to a small fire department we need to find a way to get them some help,” Logan said.

The Gage Fire Department is collecting donations for their department, and the City Bank has set up a fund for fire victims.


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