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Repeat nightmare

Street Smarts

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The Black Forest Fire reminds us too soon of the risks we take living in a natural, rugged, forested area. It brings back memories of the Waldo Canyon Fire and leaves us wondering what lies ahead.

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Marcia Gilbert of Security is in retail

What was your reaction when you first heard there was a wildfire in Black Forest? I was shocked at first, and then devastated — I love Black Forest.

To you, what was the saddest part of the fire's first days? Watching the houses go up, one by one. I used to live in the Sierra Nevada in California and experienced it there. But this is so close to town.

Was there any uplifting story you heard? When the guy saved the baby deer; I loved that. And it's nice knowing that most of the homeowners will be able to rebuild.

Do you feel like two fires in a year is a fluke, or an ominous sign? I think it's a bad sign, due to the drought, and it's so overgrown. There's just not enough protection.

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Felix Diawuoh of the west side is in customer service

What was the saddest part of the first few days of the Black Forest fire? I thought about the loss of property, but more than that I thought about the emotional, sentimental and spiritual losses that are much harder to heal.

Do you know anyone who's been victimized by this fire? Yes, I have friends who live in Black Forest and also in Waldo Canyon, so I've heard some close, personal stories. You can't imagine it unless it affects you.

Do you feel like two fires in a year is a fluke, or an ominous sign? It could be an annual occurrence and it could even be intentional; we just don't know. Sometimes evil is so bright a light that you can't look at it.

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Shelley Heller from Oklahoma City is retired

What was your reaction when you first heard there was a wildfire in Black Forest? I'm just back to visit, but I grew up here. It's devastating. I thought of all the people losing their homes, like we've seen in Oklahoma.

To you, what was the saddest part of the first few days of the fire? Just the loss. That kind of loss is an incredibly powerful experience. It's almost like it's more than you can bear.

Was there any uplifting story that you heard? How it connects people and brings people together. We remember that compassion is important, and it brings new growth, just like it will in the forest. It's a chance to re-create yourself.

Can you think of anything we can do to better protect ourselves? Have a greater consciousness about the possibility that this can happen again. And pray for rain.

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