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Lightning to blame for house fire

Lightning from an early-morning thunderstorm struck two willow trees on the property of Gerry and Sonja Goblirsch on Lake Rachel near Holmes City Monday, April 30. Lightning also apparently struck an Alexandria home. (Contributed)

Lightning is believed to be the cause of a house fire early Monday morning in Alexandria.

Shortly after 4 a.m., the Alexandria Fire Department was called to the Gregory and Donna Cabana residence, 2714 Louise Drive NW.

Alexandria Fire Chief Jeff Karrow said the lightning, from a thunderstorm that was just passing through the area, is believed to have struck the air conditioning unit on the house and started the fire.

According to the Douglas County Sheriff's Office, the Cabanas reported the fire at 4:04 a.m. Monday, April 30, noting they saw visible flames and smoke coming from within their residence.

Sheriff's deputies, the fire department and North Ambulance responded.

Upon arriving, firefighters could see heavy smoke inside the home and flames coming from the backside of the house, according to the sheriff's office.

The Alexandria Fire Department extinguished the fire and no injuries were reported. Alexandria Fire Chief Jeff Karrow said the fire damages are estimated at around $175,000.

Celeste Edenloff

Celeste is a reporter for the Alexandria Echo Press and has lived in the Alexandria Lakes Area since 1997. She first worked for the Echo Press as a reporter from 1999 to 2011, and returned in June 2016 to report on the community she calls home. Besides writing articles for the Echo Press, she has a blog, “Newspaper Girl on the Run.” Celeste is on a continuous healthy living journey and loves to teach bootcamp fitness classes and run. She has participated in more than 200 races with her husband, Al, covering the 5K, 10K, 10-mile and half-marathon (13.1 mile) distances.

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