OAK GROVE, Minn. (KMSP) - A fire over the weekend left an Oak Grove family homeless ahead of the holidays.
Gina and Brandon Bourke, nine-week-old Dean, seven-year-old Aiden and nine-year-old Hailey lost everything in a matter of minutes.
“Just happy everyone’s out, I can’t believe it,” said Brandon.
“You never think that this could happen to you, or would be you, would be us,” said Gina.
Saturday night, over the course of only fifteen minutes, a fire totaled their Oak Grove home. It started in the garage where Brandon, along with his father-in-law, were working on his now scrapped Corvette.
“It started on fire while I was under it,” said Brandon. “We tried to eliminate any flame we could, but there was just too much fuel to stop it.”
The garage door was closed when fumes caused something inside to explode.
“I was hoping praying that they could stop it, but it just kept going and going stronger and stronger,” said Gina.
Brandon, a self-employed painter, relied on his now melted tools to make a living.
“He’s a handy man and all his drills, saws, everything, he’s got to start over and that’s going to be really hard,” said April Groettum, Gina’s aunt.
April has since launched a relief effort and gift drive to help the Bourkes start over. While grateful to be safe and have each other, losing it all is never easy. There's no telling how soon the Bourkes can clear burnt remains and turn it back into their home.
“I just tell everybody out there just make sure you’re prepared for something like this,” said Brandon.
The Oak Grove Fire Chief says the exact cause of the fire is still under investigation, but believes it was an accident. For now, the Bourkes are looking for a rental home until they can rebuild.