HOLLIS, Maine (NEWS CENTER) - A family from Hollis lost just about everything they owned when fire destroyed their home late Wednesday afternoon.
Investigators say it appears the fire started in a chimney connected to a pellet stove. Every one inside did manage to get out safely. Several horses were removed from a nearby barn.
The owner of the house, Marc Tardif, is well known around Scarborough Downs where some of those horses raced. People who know the family say Tardif and his wife Peggy bred horses on the farm. Mark also trained them to race at the track. The racing community is a small one in Maine. Now other trainers and drivers are reaching out to help.
"It's devastating to think you would just lose everything and as quickly as it happened. When I talked to Peggy she said there weren't any casualties as far as people, they're grateful for that. You know they're just really great people", said Sharon Terry, Owner of Scarborough Downs.
The horse men and women are already planning a benefit dinner to help the Tardifs get back on their feet. The date and location are not nailed down yet. Information about the dinner and other fundraising efforts to help out the Tardifs will be posted on the Scarborough Downs' Facebook page.