Three-story Southmayd house burns to ground

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SOUTHMAYD, TX -- It's a 6,000 square foot house, home to a family of six. But it was no match for Sunday's blaze.

Police Chief Ron Blackwell said the fire started in the back of the three story house just after 1 a.m. Sunday.

"Fighting something that big, and there's no water supply to speak of, enough to supply firefighting activity that much," he said.

He says the fire took seven hours and 13 departments to put out because of the size of the house - three stories plus a basement.

"Firefighters were pretty tired when they left after all the heat. There was some pretty extreme heat around the house," he said.

Blackwell said no one was home when the fire started.

"I did not visit with them here, I don't know exactly where they're staying. I know they have some property in East Texas where they moved here from. So they may have been down there," Blackwell said.

Greg Moore grew up in Southmayd - he said it was quite a house.

"It was a huge house. Like I said it didn't fit any of the other houses because of the style and size. It's just a huge house," he said.

He said family members were shocked to drive past the house Sunday morning.

"And they told us the house had burned down."

Parts of the house were still smoldering Monday afternoon. Blackwell said that's normal in a fire this hot. He said they're still watching it closely and still investigating how it started.