Soldier loses irreplaceable American flag in Lake Brownwood house fire

Loren Pogue spent Wednesday afternoon sifting through the ashes of what was his house.

"I got two little ones and I know they're going to be disappointed when they see the house," he said.

Among the burnt rubble, Pogue's trying to find an American flag that survived two tours in Iraq. He completed a total of four tours fighting in the Middle East for the Texas National Guard.

Pogue's currently stationed at Camp Bowie in Brownwood.

"We all signed it, it was like a bond for us that we were here together," he said. "We fight together, we help everybody we can and we all come home the best we can."

One of the soldiers who signed the flag died in combat, according to Pogue.

"It's like a little treasure for us to bring hope to what we do," he said.

He lost his home on the 7000 block of Killarney Drive in what the Brownwood Fire Department labeled a wildfire. The Bangs and Lake Brownwood Bridge fire departments also assisted.

A nearby trailer where a fellow soldier also stationed Camp Bowie lived was also destroyed.

Brownwood Fire Chief Eddy Wood said the wind and dry conditions helped spread the flames in that area of Brown County.

Wood said people can take certain measures to protect their homes from sustaining damage.

"Just clearing debris and brush and grass away from the house," Wood said. "You don't stack combustibles and firewood up against the deck."

The fire chief said he wants homeowners to be proactive.

"[Ask yourself], what happens if a fire does burn next to my house? What is it that you can do?" Wood said.

For Pogue, the most important thing he can do is to keep his head up.

"You have to move on and have a positive attitude," he said.

He hopes his insurance will cover the losses.

The Brownwood Fire Department hasn't determined a cause for the fire, but they plan on releasing that information Thursday.

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