HALFMOON — A large Florida family in the area to escape Hurricane Irma wound up dealing with a fire this week in Halfmoon.
No one was injured in the fire, but a camper was destroyed in the Tuesday morning blaze.
The family of three adults, 13 children and three dogs all fled Edgewater, Florida, near Daytona Beach, in a small bus they own ahead of Irma. Seven of the children are foster children with autism or developmental delays.
They ended up at a home on Smith Road in Halfmoon, one that family members had used in the past, and some of the boys used the camper to experience camping, family member Paige Auborn told The Gazette.
All of the children, however, were away from the area of the fire at the time, Auborn said, evacuating the surrounding area safely.
“Thankfully at home we do frequent fire, hurricane and tornado drills,” Auborn said via a Facebook message. “As with a large group of children like this (with the special needs included), it is essential for us to always be prepared.”
Auborn has four children — one adopted and three foster. Her mother has nine — five adopted and four foster. They range in age from newborn to 17.
Pictured: Paige Auborn (seated center left) and her extended family in a 2016 photo. (Provided)
Auborn’s 21-year-old brother spotted the fire when he went into the home’s back yard, Auborn said. By that time, flames had taken over.
Her brother suffered the only injury — to his back while trying to get their dogs away safe. He’s doing better, she said.
Art Hunsinger of the Clifton Park-Halfmoon Fire Department cited an electric heater too close to…
click here to read more.