The fire reached 2,224 acres, burning areas of Schroeder, Westberry Trails, Pinedale Heights, National Guard Camp, Cleghorn Canyon, and Nameless Cave in western Rapid City. About 400 to 500 residents were evacuated on March 29 and some returned home on Wednesday, Thursday and Friday.
Public Information Officer Stephanie Cooke said only one residence on Blue Sky Trail was lost in the fire, along with two pole barns. The cause of the fire is still under investigation, although they have reported that it was man-made.
The gazebo fell in the wind in 2020, so all the pieces were in a pile on the ground in the northwest corner of the yard.
Rice said she has always been strong in her faith, but that she has grown stronger over the past few years. She said Easter weekend was different this year for her family.
“We were so grateful to have our house and no smoke damage in the house,” she said. “We didn’t go out to restaurants, we wanted to eat at home because we had a house.”
Rice said this was the third time her home had been saved from a fire – she also survived the Westberry Trails fire in 1988 which burned down her stepmother’s house and the 2012 fire. in the same neighborhood.
Despite the three times the fire got close to their home, Ms. Rice said her family was not leaving.