Remembering Yarnell: One family that lost house in Yarnell fire is moving on one year later

PRESCOTT, AZ - The Keehner’s were one of the families who didn’t have insurance during the Yarnell Hill fire, but community members came together to help raise the money to build them a new home.

“It’s all going to work out,” Debi Keehner says.

It's taken awhile for Debi to get to the point where she knows it'll all work out.

“I collect chainsaw bears and of course, wood does not survive a fire very well,” she said.

Debi and her husband, Steve, lived in their house for more than 40 years but their home was destroyed in the Yarnell Hill fire and the rebuilding process was emotional.

“There were 40 years of memories here,” Steve said.

But seeing their community come together to make the seemingly impossible possible, to build a new home where their uninsured one once stood.

“It kind of restored my faith in humanity,” Debi said.

She says that she was overwhelmed by all of it but she is very thankful for her new home.

After their home burned they rummaged through the remains to find things that did survive the blaze, like Debi’s wind chimes and somehow her grandmother’s bible survived in a box full of books where every other one was destroyed.

“If that doesn’t give you a different outlook on things, I don’t know what does,” she said.

Debi is finally starting to come to terms with what happened one year ago but she knows that some of the wounds will never heal.

“It’s going to be really hard for, not so much like I said for what we lost, but we owe those 19 guys so much. They will never be forgotten in our lives,” Debi said.

The lives and homes that were changed by a tragedy are slowly being rebuilt into something new.

“Keep your head up and one foot in front of the other, and feel blessed,” she said.

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