The owners of a California ranch in the path of one of the devastating wildfires in the region have returned home to a gruesome sight.
The charred remains of 29 horses were left behind by the Creek Fire, one of five that has led to the evacuation of nearly 200,000 people in Southern California. Their dark black bodies lay in their metal and concrete pens, left behind after their owners were forced to evacuate in the middle of the night as flames rushed towards the area.
Patricia Padilla, the owner of the ranch, said she agonized over leaving the horses, but the firemen who knocked at her door and told her to evacuate had made it clear that it was a matter of life and death that she and her family leave immediately.
“All I could think about was the horses, the horses, the horses,” Ms Padilla told the Los Angeles Times. “And [the firefighters] were like, ‘get out, get out get out’. The structures can get rebuilt, but the lives of the horses can’t… That’s my biggest heartbreak.”
The Creek Fire has raged since Tuesday morning, when it started at around 4 a.m. local time, and quickly grew.
The fire has destroyed at least 30 homes so far, and burned up upwards of 12,000 acres.
But it is just one of five currently blazing there, and wreaking devastation on people in the area.
That devastation has impacted the lives of some major pockets of wealth in the United States, including Hollywood celebrities who live in the area. As the fire threatened the area, many celebrities took to social media to describe the chaos around them, and what the fire meant to them.