CAPE GIRARDEAU, MO (KFVS) - Firefighters have put out a large apartment fire in Cape Girardeau.
It happened at Lynwood Hill Apartments at 2764 Lynwood Drive just before 9 a.m. Firefighters were called for a deck on fire.
Crews say when they arrived with four engines, there was heavy smoke coming from three sides and the attic.
Ten units in the building have damage. Some have fire, smoke and water damage. Some units only have smoke damage.
According to Battalion Chief Mark Starnes, there is $300,000 of damage.
No one was in the unit where the fire started. Some people did have to evacuate from other units, but crews say everyone was out of the building when they arrived.
Gary Belcher explains how he felt when he walked back into his apartment for the first time.
"I was like wow there's hardly anything left that's salvageable but that's all just stuff," said Belcher.
He and his wife were home when this blaze started just before nine Thursday morning. A friend pulled up and warned them of a fire on a neighbor's deck.
"We got whatever we could and got out," he said.
Even among the ashes belcher says there's plenty to be thankful for no residents or fire fighters got hurt.
In this complex, many residents are friends. The Belcher's say they were most worried about their dear friend and neighbor Francis Toole.
"I got a call from a lady across the way telling me to get here," she said.
Toole also lost everything. She wasn't here but at the beauty shop instead. She says everyone is reaching out to help.
"I've got two sons and friends down the road and lots of church family," Toole said.
A 26-year-old college student says he lost nearly everything he owns.
He lived in one of the upper apartments. He says everything including his TV and other electronics burned up.
Everyone there says it's all replaceable. They are just thankful it's only stuff they've lost instead of lives.
Crews had cut holes in the roof to prevent the fire from spreading and to relieve smoke. It was brought under control around 9:45 a.m.
According to Starnes, overhaul was long and tedious due to because the attic had six inches of blown insulation.
The owner found several vacant units for displaced residents like the Belcher's and Ms. Toole to move into.
The fire is still under investigation, but looks like a cigarette left burning could be to blame.
The state fire marshal has been called to the scene.
Crews say no one was hurt.
The Red Cross is offering assistance to fire victims and firefighters.
Scott City and Jackson crews assisted with the fire.