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Evacuees of Rockport 5 Fire return home

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Posted at 5:31 PM, Aug 19, 2013
and last updated 2013-08-19 19:31:15-04

SUMMIT COUNTY -- Summit County residents were able to return to their homes Monday after being forced to evacuate nearly a week ago after a fast-growing wildfire erupted near Rockport State Park.

“This morning is unbelievable – I’m very emotional about because I see charred landscape and I know my house survived,” said resident Sirag Paletta.

The Rockport 5 Fire was ignited by a lightning strike Aug. 13. The blaze tore through several communities, destroying nearly 2,000 acres of land.

Paletta was clearing brush from around her cabin when a neighbor started screaming at her, “The mountain's on fire, emergency evacuation, immediately Siraj! Get out of here!"

Paletta watched in horror as flames raced up and over the slopes. The blaze ultimately forced the evacuation of dozens of families.