Local firefighters try to quell a blaze early Friday morning that destroyed a home southeast of Willowcreek. PHOTO: John Braese Local firefighters try to quell a blaze early Friday morning that destroyed a home southeast of Willowcreek. PHOTO: John Braese

By Pat Caldwell

The Enterprise

VALE – An elderly local man is safe but the house he was living in on Evans Road was destroyed after an early-morning fire the day after Thanksgiving

Malheur County Sheriff Brian Wolfe said Francisco Gonzales escaped unharmed from the blaze that destroyed the home at 2072 Evans Road, southeast of Willowcreek.

Rural fire departments from Vale, Nyssa and Ontairo responded to the blaze.

“When they got there the structure was fully engulfed,” Wolfe said.

Wolfe said at 7:07 a.m. Friday a motorist on U.S. 26 noticed the smoke from the blaze, turned off the highway, proceeded down Evans Road and helped Gonzales escape.

The identity of the rescuer wasn’t immediately available.

The cause of the fire is under investigation. According to real estate records, the three-bedroom home was built in 1938.