2 houses destroyed in Forest City fire

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A backyard fire spread to a nearby house in Susquehanna County.

The fire then spread to the neighboring house.

It happened around 4 p.m. on Delaware Street in Forest City.

Fire investigators say the homeowner was burning cardboard when the fire raged out of control.

"She walked away from it," said Gus Demark, a neighbor. "She was on the other side of the house and she turned around and the whole thing was on fire.

Neighbors say it all happened so quickly.

"It just blew up, what can I tell you," said Walter Staff, a neighbor. "It just blew up. It was quick, started down under the back."

"About an hour before, I smelled it," said Demark. "I knew something was burning. I came out and looked. Then an hour later I heard the commotion. The house was engulfed. It went quick."

The fire chief says both are complete losses.

"It was quite the job, old construction," said Forest City Chief Paul Lukus. "A lot of fire in multiple directions. Multiple crews assisting us."

"They got here as quick as they could, but with the wind blowing this way, the wind kept enflaming it until it was too late," said DeMark.

DeMark says the woman wanted to go back into the house after her pet bird, but he held her back.

"My heart was in my throat, I felt so bad. She lost her car, she lost everything," said DeMark.

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