Boulder family fought off Marshall Fire to save their home, possibly many others

Local News

BOULDER COUNTY, Colo. (KDVR) — One Boulder County family stayed at their property to fight the Marshall Fire. They saved their home, and possibly many others.

The Clyncke family has lived in the area for more than 80 years. They evacuated but came back saying they did not want to lose everything they had without a fight.

“The video I took, with those flames taller than I am, 20 feet from my house, it was the scaredest I’ve ever been in my entire life,” Owen Clyncke said.

The Clyncke family put emotions aside during the height of the Marshall Fire and did what they could to protect their property. 

“We said, ‘not today, not today’. That was our plan. Not losing our property,” Owen Clyncke said.

“I don’t remember thinking anything just this has to be stopped. We don’t have a choice. We have to save the houses. Everything‘s here,” Matthew Clyncke said.

Their grandfather, Marvin Clyncke led the firefight. “We are obviously not trained firefighters by any means. We were trying to save our lives is what we were trying to do and our homes,” he said. 

With a garden hose, fire extinguishers, buckets of water, shovels and dirt, they beat back the flames saving their homes and quite possibly a section of the Spanish Hills neighborhood.

“It’s amazing what they did with a bobcat, a truck, and buckets of water,” Owen said of his grandfather and cousin. They worked through the night, battling fierce winds, wondering while fire crews on scene were not helping them.

“Two firetrucks went up and came back out, never thought any of it. So that’s the part I don’t understand,” said Marvin.

“You’re like ‘ok we’re kind of on our own here,'” said Matthew.

Frustration aside, looking back now, the Clynckes say they wouldn’t do anything differently and Matthew is actually considering becoming a volunteer firefighter.

“We’ve done it. I know I could do it. So it’s been in the back of my head for the last couple weeks,” Matthew said.

The Clynckes do credit two wildland firefighters for helping them and providing advice, even though they didn’t have any equipment.

The FOX31 Problem Solvers reached out to fire officials but have not received a response to the Clyncke’s concerns.

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