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Seven homes burned but four were vacant and the entire town evacuated safely before the fire arrived.
The fire occurred at about 10 a.m. on the southbound 5 Freeway at Mission Road, and it took Los Angeles Fire Department crews just under 30 minutes to extinguish it.
The community rallied to spare the lives of another 20 to 30 cows by moving them from the burning building onto trailers.
The former Andover Fire Department lieutenant and fire department union leader fought fires for 34 years before retiring because of a work-related injury. He died of cancer caused by smoke inhalation.
Gov. Jay Inslee declared a state of emergency throughout Washington relating to the growing risk of wildfires, including a statewide prohibition on most outdoor and agricultural burning through Sept. 30.
First responders had the fire nearly contained when a pickup truck drove past the scene and hit multiple cars and bystanders.
More than 60 people were injured in the disaster, including a dozen emergency responders, and more than 30 of them were hospitalized. One man, identified as an 18-year-old volunteer firefighter, was killed in the blaze.