Three lives were claimed in a fire in Gray County yesterday.
And today we’re learning more about the victims.
Gray County Judge, Richard Peet says Sydney Wallace, Cody Crocket, and Sloan Everett all died after succumbing to injuries they sustained from the fire.
And although they weren’t fighting the flames, they were trying to protect and save.
And it ended up costing them their lives.
It’s been more than ten years since a High Plains wildfire took the lives of several people.
“It was the fire in 2006. But at that time that was Hutchinson County, Gray County, Roberts County, and a total of 11 people died in that time, but not just in Gray County,” said Richard Peet, Gray County Judge.
But Monday was a tragic reminder of the havoc high winds, dry land and fire can cause in the Texas Panhandle.
Although the death toll wasn’t quite as high yesterday, in Gray County alone, three lives were lost.
Which was a major hit for the small Panhandle community.
“Cody Crockett, early 20s fine young man, there was Sydney Wallace was another young person in her early 20s and then there was Sloan Everett,” said Peet.
Judge Peet tells us all three were cattle hands.
They died trying to protect and save their cattle on Gething Ranch.
Peet says Wallace died from inhaling smoke.
While Crocket and Everett died from burns.
The men were airlifted toward Amarillo but died on the way there.
“All three of them were trying to I suspect, trying to round the cattle up or open up gates or whatever, to get them to safety. And the smoke. I was out there and that smoke you couldn’t see two feet in front of you. And I’m sure they just lost direction and didn’t see fire even in that fire that smoke is so thick, sometimes you can’t even see the flames,” said Peet.
Three separate families continue to mourn the loss of their loved ones.
Judge Peet says the Gray County Extension Agent is putting together a program to provide ranchers and farmers with hay who lost it all in yesterday’s fire.
Judge Peet tells us they’re trying to provide fencing for farmers as well.
Call 690-467-0753 if you need assistance.