Fire at Sunset Meadows on Easter Sunday | CraigDailyPress.com

Fire at Sunset Meadows on Easter Sunday

Patrick Kelly

Sunset Meadows resident Abbie Woolery describes how an apartment in the complex was full of smoke Sunday.

On Sunday night, Craig Fire/Rescue responded to a fire at Sunset Meadows but before they arrived some residents had already started taking action.

Abbie Woolery, 56, said she is accustomed to fire drills but this time she could tell it was different.

"I just had a bad vibe, a bad shaky vibe," she said.

Woolery could smell smoke in the hallway so she roused a neighbor and started searching for the source. Quickly, they discovered that it was coming from apartment 106.

"I went in and the apartment was full of smoke," Woolery said. "I couldn't hardly breathe."

The apartment belonged to John Heiden and he was unresponsive when Woolerly found him amidst the smoke.

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Heiden was safely removed from his apartment, thanks to Woolery and other neighbors. The rest of the residents at Sunset Meadows, 633 Ledford St., were evacuated as well.

Sunset Meadows is a senior living facility subsidized and regulated by the Department of Housing and Urban Development and Colorado Housing and Finance Authority.

Shawnna Muhne, executive director of Sunset Meadows, said the fire produced minimal damage and her primary concern is the privacy of the facilities' residents.

"We would just like to keep anything that happens on property confidential," she said.

According to Craig Fire/Rescue Battalion Chief Troy Hampton, four engines and approximately 18 personnel responded to the incident. Hampton said the evacuation went smoothly, especially considering the number of individuals residing in Sunset Meadows.

“Overall, I think it went pretty well,” he said.

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