Watch: Oregon woman describes how a wildfire went from a ‘wispy cloud’ to destroying her home


OREGON (NewsNation Now) — A woman who lost her home in an Oregon wildfire described how rapidly the fire developed and the kindness of strangers as they attempt to rebuild their lives.

Wanda German told the experience was “indescribable.” She explained the fire went from a “little, tiny, wispy cloud” in the distance to destroying her home in two days.

“And it got closer and closer until we’re getting to the point where I decided that we should start packing, but we didn’t really know what to pack because everything is important when you live up there… And then my friend called me… she said there’s no time you have to get out now. Just go. And so that’s what we did,” German said.

She stated they had experienced another wildfire earlier that month, but the fire was contained before it reached their property.

“Two days later, we went back up to see if we could get to it because the fire; we were told it shifted and we thought it missed us and went the other way. So we want to go up and water the garden so we didn’t lose everything. And by that time, our house was on fire,” German described.

Nearly 60 wildfires tore through bone-dry timber and brush from Alaska to Wyoming, according to the National Interagency Fire Center. Arizona, Idaho and Montana accounted for more than half of the large active fires.

The largest fire in the United States lay across the California border in southwestern Oregon. The Bootleg Fire — which doubled and doubled again over the weekend — threatened some 2,000 homes, state fire officials said. It had burned at least seven homes and more than 40 other buildings.

German and her husband explained they have evacuated into a nearby town and are currently living in their truck.

“The people in the town have been absolutely amazing. They gave us a tent. Somebody brought us a cook stove and propane and dog food and cat food. Everybody’s been so nice,” German said.

Overall though while she is thankful to be safe, German remarked the experience has been “emotional”

“I just want to go home so bad,” she said.

The Associated Press contributed to this report.

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