Second homeowner finds damage from fire that destroyed neighboring West Side home

Heat from fire melted siding on Karen Parchem’s house

SAN ANTONIO – A fire that destroyed one home, killing as many as four pets inside, also caused damage to a neighboring home.

The fire, which broke out just before 5 a.m. Thursday, appears to have started in the garage of a home in the 700 block of Cypressbrook, according to San Antonio firefighters.

The flames quickly spread throughout the house, sending a man and woman running for help.

“She rang the doorbell, but we didn’t know that their phones got melted,” said Karen Parchem, who lives next door.

Parchem said her husband quickly called 911, bringing firefighters to the area.

She watched as fire crews battled the flames. At one point, she said they advised her and other neighbors on the street to move out of their homes as a precaution.

“The flames were already shooting over to our house,” Parchem said.

She said she could feel the intense heat from the fire, even as she stood on the opposite side of the street.

Hours later, after firefighters had left the scene, the children of the couple in the home where the fire started took stock of the damage.

They were not sure right away what, if anything, could be salvaged.

Speaking off camera, one woman said her parents were still a bit traumatized by the ordeal. She said the family has lived in that home for the past 40 years.

According to Parchem, who has lived in the neighborhood for a little more than a decade, the home that burned was the first to be built in the area.

“No Sea World or anything out here. Just them,” she said.

After daylight, Parchem also was able to see that her own home had not escaped unscathed. The heat from the fire had melted the siding on her home in several places.

“The window’s all cracked on the bottom. The chimney’s all melted,” she said as she pointed out the damage.

Parchem said she is unsure what will happen next for herself or her neighbors, although she does not plan to leave her home.

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About the Authors

Katrina Webber joined KSAT 12 in December 2009. She reports for Good Morning San Antonio. Katrina was born and raised in Queens, NY, but after living in Gulf Coast states for the past decade, she feels right at home in Texas. It's not unusual to find her singing karaoke or leading a song with her church choir when she's not on-air.

Alex Gamez is a photojournalist at KSAT.

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