A woman died in her husband’s arms after hiding in a swimming pool to try and escape from the devastating wildfires that have struck northern California.
Armando and Carmen Berriz took shelter in the pool, floating with their mouths and noses poking out of the water to breathe.
The blaze encircled them and sadly after several hours in the pool Ms Berriz, 75, died.
Mr Berriz, 76, suffered burns from holding onto the edge of the pool but managed to climb out alive.
The couple had been married for 55 years and were staying in a hilltop rental house in Santa Rosa on holiday with their children and grandchildren.
As reported by CNN, their daughter Monica Ocon said: “Everybody loved her. This loss has affected family and friends around the world.”
Mr and Ms Berriz were on holiday with their daughter and her husband to celebrate their birthdays.
Their son-in-law Luis Ocon said most of the day was spent by the pool playing games and relaxing.
At 1am Mr Ocon said he turned out the lights and noticed the red glow of embers outside, walked outside to take a closer look and watched as the front yard burst into flames.
“It was like an explosion,“ he said. ”It just lit up.“
”It's hard to explain unless you were there. It went from embers to complete engulfment, completely around us, in 30 seconds, 40 seconds at most.“
The family decided to leave the property, Mr Ocon in one car, his wife and their daughter in another and the Berrizes in a third car.
”It looked like something you see in an apocalypse movie,“ Luis said as they had to dodge burning trees in the road.
When they reached the bottom, the family realised that Mr and Ms Berriz were no longer behind them.
Mr Ocon attempted to head back up the ridge to find his in-laws, but he was blocked by the fires.
He met a firefighter, who took his number and promised to look for Mr and Ms Berriz.
The Ocons later found out the couple had become trapped by a fallen tree on the drive down and made their way back up to the house.
”They went hand in hand, together, and jumped into the pool,“ Ms Ocon said.
The couple stayed in the pool for hours while Armando held onto the edge of the pool, burning his hand and Carmen held onto her husband.
Throughout the night they made their way from one side of the pool to the other to escape the heat.
Each time they came up for air, they would pray together to comfort each other.
At around 7am the smoke and heat became too much and Ms Berriz died.
Her husband stayed with her for several more hours while the fires died down before making his way down the ridge.
Firefighters informed the Mr and Ms Ocon of the hospital where they could find their father and he told them what happened.