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Fire destroys Grand Coulee home


Firefighters douse the smoldering remains of a home that burned in Grand Coulee Sunday morning. The cause is under investigation. - Scott Hunter photo

A family lost their Grand Coulee home Sunday morning when a fire broke out in the carport and went undetected until drivers passing by saw it, alerting authorities and the family inside. No one was hurt.

But Josh and Brenda Ristine, their 9-year-old twin girls and 10-year-old boy are starting over. The 1981 double-wide is gone, along with nearly everything they owned.

The fire started just before 10:30 a.m. Brenda was already at work, Josh Ristine said, as firefighters worked to put out the fire. She works for Center Lodge Motel, where he is the head of motel maintenance and for owners Dale and Kathy Baty's rental properties.

The kids were up, dressed and playing, he said, and he was lying down for a late morning nap when someone pounded on the front door.

That was Darla Orr, who had been driving by when she saw the blaze. Another driver had obviously stopped to call 911, Orr said, but seeing no one outside, Orr knocked on the house as the carport burned, to alert anyone who might be inside.

Neither he nor the kids had had any indication of the fire, Josh said, so he was thankful for Orr's intervention.

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