SOUTHINGTON, Ohio (WKBN) – A burn pile got out of control today and started two unintended fires in Southington.
One burned a barn to the ground. The other caught a neighbor’s home on fire.
The Szitas’ were shopping, and husband Joe just had a feeling to cut that trip short and come home.
“We got off 422 and could see the smoke and we said somebody’s house is on fire, I hope it’s not ours,” Joe Szitas said.
They pulled into the driveway and saw the brush surrounding the home on fire, plus some embers had blown near the back door and started a fire.
Joe started moving cars.
“The fire (barn) was huge, if we’d have gone to Hubbard the house would’ve been gone,” Szitas said.
One of the seven responding fire departments came from the north and saw more flames on the front porch and alongside the house. Joe’s wife, Penny, grabbed a broom and started beating down the flames in the grass.
After the fire was put out, Penny started looking and worrying about a hickory tree.
“I call him Old Hick,” Penny Szitas said. “I was upset about my house but I was upset about my tree because it was engulfed, I hope it makes it.”
The Szitas will make it. Their house was saved and their barn had very little damage.
“I thank God for all those firefighters in Farmington and all around us because our guys would’ve never handled it by themselves,” Joe Szitas said. “That fire was raging as tall as our barn.”
Southington, Champion, Farmington, Braceville, Warren Twp., Bristol, and Mespo firefighters all fought the fire.