Shortly before 3:15 a.m., Clay County Justice Center Dispatchers began toning out a three-alarm fire to the residence of Jerry Kinder, 13613 N. Murphy Ave.
When firefighters from the Van Buren and Dick Johnson volunteer fire departments arrived on the scene, they found the residence fully engulfed with the roof beginning to cave in.
First responders from the Van Buren Volunteer Fire Department were able to retrieve valuables from the home.
"We did all we could to save what we could from the house, but the fire moved so fast that nearly everything was lost," Dick Johnson Fire Chief Kevin Orme said.
More than 25 firefighters and seven apparatuses responded to the blaze, including members of the Brazil City Fire Department and Trans-Care.
"The fire looked to have started in the laundry room," Van Buren Assistant Fire Chief Michael Short said. "Luckily, everyone was able to get out of the building without any injuries occurring, but the house itself was a total loss."
Attempts to extinguish the blaze were hampered by the structure of the residence.
"The roof was made up of cedar shakes and had a total of five layers of shingles," Orme said. "The fire was about 95 percent extinguished by 4 a.m., but numerous hotspots were created with the cave in of the roof."
The homeowner tried to quell the fire himself before contacting 911, but was unsuccessful due to the quick spread of the fire.
"It's a total mess," Kinder said. "The fire started small and I tried to get it out with water from the sink, but the fire just moved too fast."
Fire department officials contacted the American Red Cross to assist the family.