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Family sneaks back in to save home

October 22, 2007 |  4:13 pm

At the exclusive gated community of Bridlewood Country Estates near Lake Poway, homes were burning all around a few fire crews, stretched thin.  Residents were forced to evacuate Windpiper Road, but Rita Skomra and her husband and son sneaked back in to try to save their home. They used a garden hose to knock down a fire along the fence separating their home from a neighbor's house. Then the neighbor's back fence ignited, and Skomra waited desperately in her front yard, hoping to flag down a firetruck.

"After all this work, I don't want that fence to start everything burning. We worked hard to save our home," she said.

The winds have been so severe that palm trees and jacarandas have been blown out of the ground. Flames and black smoke and embers are everywhere.

-- Robert Lopez