HUNTSVILLE, Ala. (WHNT) - A barn fire kills what is believed to be 24 animals.
Green Mountain volunteer firefighters and Huntsville firefighters responded to a barn fire at Cheval Farm early Saturday morning. Firefighters say when they arrived on the scene, the barn was engulfed in flames. They say they believe lightning started the fire.
Twelve horses, 11 cats and one dog were inside the barn. A lot of those animals were rescues.
"It's been hard. It really is," farm employee Charlie Brannum said.
Brannum has worked at Cheval Farm for several years. She says those animals meant a lot to the farm's owner.
"Those horses are her babies and she has done nothing 24/7 but worry about their well being," Brannum said.
She says they haven't seen the cats or the dog, and they're still hoping for the best. They don't expect it, though.
"I don't think you think you'll ever have to deal with it or be around it, but it struck hard."
She says the hours since the fire haven't made it any easier. There is a comforting sight at the farm's gate, though. Bunches of flowers are strung there, from community members who are as devastated by the loss as she is.
Residents in the area say they loved coming to see the horses, and driving by looking at them in the field has become commonplace.
Brannum says such a loss is hard to cope with.
"There really isn't anything you can do. What's lost is lost and you won't ever get these lives back," she said.
The farm's owners say if you would like to do something to help the farm, you can give a donation to any animal shelter or rescue of your choice under the farm's name.