Residents in one Tustin neighborhood on Tuesday expressed gratitude to firefighters for their work in saving homes from the destructive Canyon Fire 2, which has damaged or destroyed at least 36 homes in three Orange County cities.
The fire encroached upon the backyards of residents on one street in the Cowan Heights neighborhood, right above Peters Canyon Regional Park on Monday, according to homeowners Dave and Gwen Hirsch.
As the flames crept closer to his property after tearing through the park, Dave Hirsch took a garden hose out and, along with a friend, used it to keep the property wet.
“We tried to keep the house wet. We knew we were not going to be able to put out any fires, but it was all about just trying to take care of embers if we could," he said.
Firefighters were already parked on the street and immediately sprang into action, helping to save the homes on the street.
As embers blew around them, worried residents watched and cheered fire crews as they fought the flames and called in water-dropping helicopters for support, Dave Hirsch recalled.
“We were cheering them on, we were very grateful for everything they did," he said.
No homes on their street were lost, although two sustained some damage from small attic fires, according to Hirsch.
“Those guys were unbelievable, unbelievable. Not only did they take care of the house, they were super friendly, they were professional and we are so very grateful for all their support, all their help to take care of this place," he said.
In a gesture of thanks, the couple kept a pot of coffee on their patio for firefighters Tuesday morning and even made them breakfast.
“Because they were here all night and they, off and on, took turns walking the property, checking the hill, checking the eaves of our home," Gwen Hirsch explained.
She added that giving them breakfast to thank them was “the least” they could do to show their appreciation.
A fire truck remained parked in the couple's driveway on Tuesday morning as the 7,500-acre fire continued to rage in Orange County.