Ashes ignite compost pile, fire destroys St. Paul home

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Photo Courtesy: Twin Cities Fire Wire

A Saint Paul couple is trying to pick up the pieces after a devastating house fire.

Garth Mann still can’t believe what happened to his Saint Paul home, while he and his live-in girlfriend were out at dinner Monday evening.

“It’s surreal right now,” said Mann. “Still picking through burned stuff. Never went through something like this before.”

A neighbor captured on video the flames ravaging the couple’s deck and the backside of their home.

The couple told Fox 9 they had a fire in their metal backyard fire pit Sunday evening. They figure some embers that may have been still hot might have blown or somehow landed in their compost pile. Combine that with a dry, old wooden deck nearby and the blaze swept through the home.

“I think the foundation is probably the one thing that will be saved, but otherwise it’s rough inside,” said Mann.

His kitchen is destroyed. He doesn’t know what comes next. He just knows he has firefighters and his neighbors to thank.

In fact, one neighbor, who he had never met, actually kicked open the front door while the house was burning in back to let out his dog, Levi.  His cat also survived.

The neighborhood has also launched a GoFundMe site to help the couple begin rebuilding.

“This neighborhood is great,” said Mann. “I mean everyone should get to know their neighbors better. Unfortunately, it took an event like this to get to know everyone more. Can’t say enough about the people around here.”