Fire Crews Save Home from Hill Top Fire Still Burning in Sanpete County

Aug 8, 2018, 6:25 PM | Updated: 11:06 pm

SANPETE COUNTY, Utah – It’s the kind of spot many of us would love to escape to. Milburn, in Sanpete County, is where the Comptons found their paradise.

“We describe it as living in a game preserve,” said Raymond Compton.

“The little critters are all over the place,” Diana Compton said.

Deer, squirrels, turkey, and all sorts of birds make their way through the property the Comptons own. Plus, the views are the kind you normally see on postcards.

“I knew right away I wanted to make our home here,” said Diana. “I’m definitely not a city girl, definitely a country girl.”

However, those views sure do look different now. Wildfires have a way of disrupting even the most peaceful spot.

“We didn’t even get out with a toothbrush,” said Raymond when he was describing the moment Sanpete County Sheriff’s deputies told them they needed to evacuate because the Hill Top Fire was getting closer.

“We just grabbed our two cats and got in the car and left,” said Diana.

As they were evacuating, they weren’t sure their house would make it through the fire. Until firefighters arrived and started surrounding their home.

“A helicopter landed in our driveway,” said Raymond. “Firefighters jumped out, started grabbing hoses and said, ‘we’re going to save your house.'”

Ever since the Hill Top Fire started a couple of days ago, fire crews have been dropping water from helicopters, digging fire lines, and doing whatever they can to keep flames away from homes.

“There are a lot of homes up here and a lot of structures that need protection and that has been the objective since day one is to keep these structures protected,” said Leann Fox, who is with Utah’s Division of Forestry, Fire & State Lands. “As soon as this fire was moving down this hillside, they had dozers and crews up here and planes dropping retardant. It was very, very impressive.”

So far, those efforts have helped. When the Comptons were allowed to return home, they saw how close the fire came.

“They deserve all the credit they can possibly get,” said Diana. “My greatest admiration is for firefighters.”

As of Wednesday afternoon, the Hill Top Fire had reached more than 1,800 acres and is only 14 percent contained.

Even though the views are now different, the Comptons say they are happy because their home is still the same.

“The firefighters did an amazing job. We’re very grateful for them,” said Raymond.

Burned land behind the Compton home Compton Home Diana and Raymond Compton Hill Top Fire Smoke behind the Compton's house
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Fire Crews Save Home from Hill Top Fire Still Burning in Sanpete County