‘Just Devastating': Lake Berryessa Residents Salvage What They Can From Destroyed Homes

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Some residents who live near Lake Berryessa in Napa County returned Wednesday to what's left of their homes after a wildfire swept through their neighborhood last week.

Kristen Forbin, 29, was among the residents to find a pile of rubble where her home once stood.

"This is everything I know," she said. "I don't really know anything else. This really is everything to me. It’s my whole life."

Forbin has never lived anywhere but the Berryessa Highlands area. The peaceful place she grew up in and where she’s now raising a family of her own was anything but peaceful last Tuesday night when the LNU Lightning Complex Fire came roaring in.

"We never thought anything like this would happen, that’s for sure," Forbin said.

While many homes in the area were destroyed, others remain standing.

Ramona Murray is grateful her home was spared, but she's hurting for her neighbors.

"It’s just so hard just to see everybody that's lost their homes," she said. "Just devastating. All we can do is pray."

"I think we're still kind of in shock a little bit," Dan Breitbach said after losing his home.

Breitbach said this was the third or fourth time he's had to evacuate in the last four years.

"It's the stress every year wondering is this the year we’re going to lose our home," he said. "This was the year."

While the Beritbach family loves Lake Berryessa, they said it's time to move.

Forbin said she can't imagine living anywhere else.

"It’s a very special place," she said. "It’s a piece of heaven in the middle of what feels like chaos sometimes. Even with the house burned down, I still feel like I’m at home."

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