LOVELAND, Colo. (CBS4) – Friends and family members are mourning the loss of a woman who apparently defied an evacuation order and refused to leave her home during the High Park Fire.
Linda Steadman’s home was located at 9123 Old Flowers Road. Her family said in a statment that the 62-year-old “perished in the cabin she loved.”
Jordan Levick, who remains evacuated from his own home, told CBS4 on Tuesday Steadman was his friend’s mother. He said he is saddened but not surprised some are choosing to stay in their homes despite evacuation orders.
Many have lived in the area for their whole lives and want to make sure their homes are protected, even if that means putting their own lives at risk.
“I know that she wanted to stay and hold out at the house for as long as possible, and that’s the pioneer mentality,” Levick said.
The Larimer County Sheriff’s Office confirmed they found the remains of Steadman on Monday. Sheriff Justin Smith in a news conference Monday that said Steadman’s home received two emergency notifications after the fire started and a firefighter who was trying to reach her home had to retreat because of the flames.
“We believed Linda was up there when the fire started … I believe the documents show two calls to the residence. By the time I had a firefighter who could get through the locked gate to get up there, he was chased out by fire,” Smith said. “We were able to get up there today … they were able to start doing a search. They found what’s ultimately believed to be human remains consistent with Mrs. Steadman.”
Steadman’s family’s statement said she was a “mother, grandmother, sister and wife.”
“The entire Steadman Family would like to commend all the firefighters and emergency personnel dedicated to saving lives and property,” the family wrote.
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