Just after noon Monday, the Zavalla Volunteer Fire Department went up in flames. Authorities do not suspect arson, but have no idea what may have started the blaze.
Assistant Fire Chief Richard Brunk was too distraught to talk with the East Texas News, but his fellow firefighters said he's been with the Zavalla V.F.D. for many years.
Brunk spent much of his time writing grant applications and bringing new equipment and gear to his department. Authorities estimate the total loss of that equipment at more than $500,000, but that did not stop them from doing their job. Some of the firefighters were still helping to put out the fire even without their protective gear.