SILVERTHORNE, Colo. — When the Ptarmigan Fire began to grow in Silverthorne, wildland firefighters from all over came to protect homes.
"This has been my first season and it’s been the most amazing year of my life,” said Mason Dixon, a firefighter on Eastern Nevada Agency 2IA Wildland Fire Crew.
Over the phone from his home state of Nevada, Dixon said this season alone he's been to Idaho, California, Utah, and now Colorado with his crew.
“It feels so rewarding, you know," he said about his job.
But while he was working to contain the Ptarmigan Fire, flames sparked from coal in his fireplace took his home and his dogs.
"The house is completely scorched. There’s nothing left," Dixon said. "It’s not the house I lost that hurts, it’s just the four pups I had that were locked inside."
Dixon's wildland crew has taken care of each other this year, and they had his back one more time when they created a GoFundMe with the goal of raising $20,000 for Dixon to rebuild.
“Far surpassed [that]," Dixon said. "It’s insane."
It turns out, a lot of other people had his back too.
One Coloradan donated $20 and wrote “thank you for protecting our homes; we hope this helps you to rebuild yours.”
Another donated $200 and said “Mason and his colleagues are the reason we had a home to return to."
The fundraiser has surpassed $36,000.
“I can’t thank everyone enough," Dixon said, noting people from so many Western states who donated.
Dixon said he doesn't need any more money, and he just wants everyone to know how grateful he is. He had no idea the people he's helped would be so ready to help him.
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