TOMAHAWK TOWNSHIP, Ark. - Fire departments in Searcy County had their hands full fighting two big wildfires last week. One of those fires destroyed close to half a dozen homes.
And one of those houses destroyed was David Griffin's cabin in Tomahawk Township.
Griffin said, "Got my dog. And all I could do was just get out of here."
David lived off Tomahawk Church Road and saw the fire from a distance in the woods on Thursday.
Griffin said, "Called the Searcy County sheriff's department. The guy took my name and number, said he'd call me back but he never did. So we kind of let our guard down. Next thing I know my neighbor is honking at me at the end of my driveway saying the fire already had his cabin. Then we just abandoned ship and this is what happened."
That fire also destroyed four to six other homes and spread across hundreds of acres of land.
"Sounded like World War III up here. Tanks exploding and fireballs," Griffin said.
He and another neighbor said they lost tens of thousands of dollars worth of property in the fire.
"A ton of recording equipment. I used to have a studio. I'm a retired musician," Griffin said. "And I lost about 15-20 instruments. A dobro, banjos, fiddles, guitars."
The chief deputy with the Searcy County sheriff's office said the fire department had already been paged to the Tomahawk fire before Griffin called. He couldn't confirm if the dispatcher said he'd call Griffin back, but said it was an extremely chaotic time, as fire departments were working to put out another fire near St. Joe that had also spread across hundreds of acres.
Griffin said, "If we had a little bit of warning, we could've saved a few things."
He is trying to make the most of the situation and start over.
"Working on having a teepee. So I can get an 18-footer for about $800, so that's what I'm going to do. And live there and slowly rebuild," he said.
The Arkansas Forestry Commission said no homes were lost in the fire near St. Joe.
No one was hurt in either fire, and the causes of both remain under investigation.
Griffin has a GoFundMe account.