Cheyenne Mountain High School - Class of '62 - 50th Anniversary
Class Memories of the
Cheyenne Mountain Fire
Historic Photo from Pikes Peak Library
“Fire Blazes on Cheyenne Mountain” by Stan Payne, January, 1950.
Courtesy of Special Collections, Pikes Peak Library District. Image Number: 004-5421.
"View down road toward Cheyenne Mountain shrouded with smoke from the forest fire of January 17, 1950. Caption under photo: “A series of fires on and near Cheyenne Mountain destroyed uncounted acres of grass and timber and spewed forth dense columns of smoke which covered the countryside. This photograph, taken on highway 115 about two miles north of Camp Carson shows an overall view of the smoke mushrooming from Cheyenne mountain. ” On the 17th, the range from Cheyenne Mountain on toward the south was in flames. The US Army sent troops to fight the fire. Seven Camp Carson soldiers lost their lives working to bring the inferno under control. Photo appeared in the Colorado Springs Gazette Telegraph on January 17, 1950, page 1."
From Susan Feldt Osborn, remembering the later fire Terri brought up
Monday, 02 July
Yes, I remember the stable fire well. It was the Broadmoor stables, which at that time were located only a block from my house. One horse died, but they were able to get the rest of them out. My dad was secretary of the volunteer fire departments and he was on the phone constantly. I think the junior high time frame sounds right. I slept through the whole thing, I woke up to a room full of smoke. My dad said, "If I could sleep through something like that he wasn't going to wake me up!' I don't sleep that soundly anymore. They rebuilt the stables behind Pauline Chapel. I used to rent a horse and go riding all the time in junior high and early high school. Does anyone have a date on this fire? Fondly, Susan Feldt Osborn
From Barbara Cooper Hall
Saturday, 01 July
I was living on a ranch south of town, where the 7-11 is off Harrison road and The Best Western where several of us stayed for the reunion, ...anyway I remember my Mon taking my brothers and me into town to my Grandparents' house. Fort Carson was just south of us and she was so scared the fire would reach the ranch. I was six at the time and don't remember how long we stayed in town. Sounds like Donna has a better memory than mine. Barbara
From Terri Munro Erikson, who remembers another fire
Saturday, 01 July
BTW, I seem to remember the stable fire, but wasn’t it junior high? I wasn’t here in grade school, but I took riding lessons at that stable with an old cowboy and Peter Packard, of all people. We rode all over the Broadmoor and up on the cross-country jumping trails below the zoo. Met an escaped kangaroo once, back when they kept them in a wire pen best for chickens.
From Lyuda Holton Winchell
Saturday, 30 June
My dad also fought the 1950 fire. I remember him coming home covered head to toe with soot, including his skin, you could barely see the whites/red of his eyes. It also burned the Broadmoor stables and killed one horse. Several horses were turned loose and they came running down Mesa from Taffy Gray's old house toward our house on Anita and ran off into the woods near the kindergarten. Took days to find them all.
From Dan Bernheim
Satursday, 30 June
I had a straight shot of Cheyenne Mountain out of my bedroom window in Cheyenne canyon in 1950 when I was seven. The only time I saw flames 50 or so feet high live since then was last Tuesday evening (from 5 miles away I might add). OK does any of the K-12s remember the fire fighting backpacks that were hanging from the wall in the basement of the old school? My brother Robert was in high school at the time and they (they being who I have no idea) came and got the high school boys and the equipment and trucked them up the mountain, dropped them off and told them to fight the fire. Robert said that somebody brought a truck full of beer up there and dropped off a couple of cases. Everybody ditched their fire-fighting equipment and sat down and drank the beer! Times have changed a little.
From Susan Feldt Osborn
Satursday, 30 June
My dad was one of the volunteer firefighters in the 1950 fire. They were within an inch of letting all the animals out of the Broadmoor Zoo when the winds changed and went the other way. Although I was only six, that is a memory that has stayed in my mind. My heart goes out to all of you who are breathing the smoke and have ashes all over your property. We have had our share of those times in Southern California, although our house has never been in danger.
From Dr. Donna Johnson
Saturday, 30 June .
To help set the record straight, that fire was in January 1950. It started in the Broadmoor golf course grass clippings and spread south, with the help of 90mph winds. My family lived at Star Ranch. I was 6. My parents were called and woke us up in the middle of the night, put us into the car and drove into town, through burning trees. The adults went back to fight the fire which burned for several days. Only one of the cabins at the Ranch burned down (my Dad build a replacement). It was maybe 50 feet from the building we lived in. It was amazing that the whole Ranch didn't burn. About twenty years later my brother Sam was up where the grass clippings were still kept, only then they were sprinkled with water, 24-7.
From Torry Krutzke
Frisday, 29 June
Some of what is taking place reminds me of the Cheyenne Mountain fire in the mid 50s. It started on the Star Ranch property, burned a very large area including part of Fort, then Camp, Carson. Luckily it was stopped from coming around the front of the mountain and into Broadmoor and Cheyenne Canyon. As has taken place this time, there was a very great outpouring of support for those affected as well as the firefighters. I remember taking food out to the firefighters.
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