Owensboro company rebuilding one year after Tennessee wildfire

Published: Nov. 29, 2017 at 9:49 PM CST|Updated: Dec. 9, 2017 at 4:52 PM CST
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A Tennessee wildfire burned thousands of acres last November, destroying entire neighborhoods. 
A total of 14 people died in the blaze. That same fire destroyed dozens of Rental Cabins belonging to an Owensboro Company. 

OWENSBORO, KY (WFIE) - That fire burned for weeks and it turned out to be one of the worst wildfires in the last 100 years for Tennessee. It was this day back in 2016 when American Patriot Getaways got word that some of the cabins that they rent out were in danger because of the massive fire. CEO, Wayne Foster, had more than just the cabins down there.

"Children that work with us that live down there," said Foster. "We were obviously concerned but they were evacuated. So, we were concerned about them.  We were more concerned, I guess, about our guests."

American Patriot Getaways brought everyone that everyone that works for them in to answer phone calls and to make sure that everyone got out okay, which was their biggest concern.

"That was the scary part. Ya know stuff can be replaced. You can rebuild a cabin," said Foster. "That's not a big deal. You can't give a life back."

And that is exactly what they did. Rebuilt. They had over 50 cabins damaged or destroyed so It was a tough couple of months to start the year.

"Pretty discouraging at the time and we really thought it would take a year to recover," said Foster. "But, actually, by March, we were back up and going and actually have had record months every month since March."

Wayne says it's unfortunate that 14 people lost their lives in the fire but there is a silver lining.

"There is more construction going on than has been going on since 2007."

They tell us that they are still rebuilding a few of their bigger cabins and adding a few new ones. They hope to have them all complete in the next year.

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