Family affected by fire outside of Richardton reflects on their loss

Published: Mar. 30, 2021 at 8:19 PM CDT
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BISMARCK, N.D. (KFYR) - Monday night’s fire came within hundreds of feet of a home on Neil Hauck’s property, and put many other farmsteads in the area at risk as well.

Those who live and work in the area said the fire did result in some loss. High winds and blowing dust mixed with smoke from the fire made it a difficult one to contain.

“You couldn’t see the house or the cattle. Between the wind and the dust and the smoke we couldn’t see anything,” said the owner of the property and cattle Neil Hauck.

Neil said as soon as he and his son saw the fire, they knew they’d be there all night.

“Once I got out here I knew. I even called my wife and told her I won’t be home tonight, so we knew it was going to be a long one,” said Neil’s son and rancher Cory Hauck.

Luckily, along with the many fire departments who came to help, neighbors with tractors equipped with discs came to help turnover the ground in an attempt to stop the fire from spreading.

“It’s just kind of how it works out in the country. You see a fire, everybody wants to rush and go help and get it taken care of because they know it could be them next,” said Cory Hauck.

Still, structures meant to block the wind were blown over by it and others have been burnt down. Both Neil and Cory Hauck said the worst part is losing some of their cattle.

“I think they just got smoked and then I would imagine some of them got trampled because they piled in the corner so tight,” said Neil Hauck.

Neil said they’re lucky this calving season has been a good one, but losing any of their cattle is still a huge loss at about $800 per calf.

The Haucks said they’re thankful for all the help they received fighting the fires last night and said, without it, the result could’ve been much worse.

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