By Conor McCue

SUPERIOR, Colo (CBS4) — While many families that evacuated due to the Marshall Fire are beginning to return to their homes and neighborhoods, others with nothing to return to remain in shelters, hotels, or the homes of their loved ones. One family that just moved to Superior from Alabama is among those who lost everything.

“It’s going to be OK,” Tom Spindle said.

(credit: CBS)

As the Marshall Fire raced toward Superior Thursday, Spindle, his wife, Shayla, and four of their five kids had only seconds to spare. Spindle said he told everyone to grab their shoes and a coat and get outside.

“We went to run out the front door following the kids and smoke was coming in the front door and embers were actually falling into the house, so we shut the door and we ran to a back bedroom, opened a window, and punched out the screen,” Spindle said.

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Like many in the area, the family tried to leave their home off Coal Creek Drive by car but decided there was no safe path. After that, the next best option was to run into the open space nearby,

Spindle said the family battled strong winds, jumped a fence, and eventually escaped the area after strangers offered them a ride in their truck.

“Those angels drove us all the way to her sister’s house in Thornton. It was a real miracle for us,” Spindle said.  “We left with a feeling that it was likely we weren’t going to have a house when we came back.”

That night, a photo of their home on fire in a local newspaper confirmed Tom Spindle’s suspicions, but on Saturday, he still went to see for himself. After hiking through the snow to get into his neighborhood, Spindle found the home he moved into just two weeks ago was nothing but snow and soot.

“We knew really quickly, so from that perspective, it was actually kind of comforting to know, yeah, that’s it, that’s OK, it’s what we expected, and we were at family’s house immediately,” Spindle said. “It’s just stuff. There are photo albums and there’s family keepsakes and things we won’t be able to get back, and that stings, but that’s OK too.”

Three days later, the Spindles say they are relying on faith, family and community. An online fundraiser has since raised close to $60,000.

“It’s just been overwhelming, and we’re just so thankful,” Spindle said.

Though a tough start in their new Colorado home, the Spindles have no plans to leave.

“We know we want to be a part of rebuilding, of making this place strong again, and we plan to stick around,” Spindle said.

Conor McCue