A tough morning for firefighters turns into an ever tougher day for homeowner Cindy Bruton.
"Oh my God, every bit of the memories are gone...all the baby pictures, all the pictures, everything," she said.
Bruton couldn't even watch as firefighters from six departments tackle the flames in her side apartment that she uses for storage.
The fire broke out at around 3:30 a.m. on her property on Hwy 190 in Belton. And what was inside the building kept the flames going long after fires this size normally go out.
"It was completely full of antiques and propane tanks and ammo...we couldn't gain access because of that," said Central Bell Co. Fire Chief Jason Worsdale.
Seven or eight propane tanks fueled the fire. And at one point the ammo sent firefighters ducking for cover.
"We probably had about five minutes worth of ammo popping off," Worsdale said.
The closest water source was around 2.5 miles away. Several volunteer departments rushed to bring tankers of water.
And then the roof collapses, pinning the fire underneath. So firefighters had to wait for special equipment.
"We couldn't access the fire once the roof collapsed, the walls collapsed so we had to get a bulldozer out here," Worsdale said.
It was a total loss. And Cindy thinks she knows how the damaging fire got its start. She had the fireplace going in the apartment the night before.
"I think the chimney caught on fire...I thought the fire was out, but I guess it wasn't," she said.
It's a tough lesson to learn as she thinks about what to do now.
"Nothing to do, just clean it up and go on," she said.
And as she cleans up the ashes of her late husband's memories, she gives thanks no one was hurt.