Fire breaks out at historic Mesa home

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By Christina O'Haver By Christina O'Haver
By Christina O'Haver By Christina O'Haver
By Christina O'Haver By Christina O'Haver
By Christina O'Haver By Christina O'Haver
By Christina O'Haver By Christina O'Haver

MESA, Ariz. -- A historic Mesa home that had been converted to an auto shop was damaged when it caught fire Saturday.

Investigators are trying to determine what caused the blaze at the approximately 75-year-old home near Broadway Road and Country Club Drive.

Mesa Fire and Medical Capt. Ken Hall said it appears the fire may have started in the back of the home, where automotive parts were stored. He said it was difficult for crews to access the area.

"Our crews did make entry into the home initially very quickly to make sure nobody was inside," Hall said. "Once they determined that was taken care of, they were able to attack the fire."

Hall said crews were able to keep the flames from spreading to other homes.

"There was quite a bit of flames when the crews arrived, and the homeowner next door was very concerned," Hall said. "I think a lot of times we think of just saving the initial homeowner's property, but there's also the consideration of the adjoining properties, and today we were successful in preventing any damage to the neighboring homes."

Rudy Roman said he was coaching his nephew's football game when his mom called and told him about the fire next door. Roman initially thought his home had caught fire and his brother was still inside.

"It was the worst thing ever," he said. "You go from watching your nephew playing football, excited, to, 'Hey, your brother's in a house on fire.' It's crazy, nerve-racking."

Roman rushed home and found that his mother and brother had safely exited their home after a bystander alerted them to the fire next door.

"It was pretty big," Roman said of the fire. "The flames were actually going over our house. It almost spread to our house."

Roman said he's thankful the fire crews were able to get the fire under control quickly.

"I appreciate all police and firefighters for what they do," he said.