A former firefighter couldn't believe it when the address that came over on his pager Tuesday morning turned out to be his own home.
Michael Beakey left work and headed to 49 Devotion Road, his home of 30 years, and arrived to find fire trucks lined up outside his driveway.
"It just didn't hit me. It didn't register somehow," he said.
Despite firefighters' best efforts, the home was destroyed.
"Totally lost. We lost everything," said his wife, Ruth Beakey.
Fire officials said flames spread quickly through the house, which was built in the 1850s. Nine fire departments battled the blaze.
"In an old house like this, it kind of gets into small spaces," explained Scotland Asst. Fire Chief Kevin Ring Jr. "It took us two-and-a-half to three hours to get the fire out."
Michael Beakey, a 25-year department veteran, said he felt helpless watching his house burn down.
"I wanted to grab some equipment and a hose and get in there and do it myself," he said.
The tables have turned and the husband and wife now living with the reality they've seen so many others experience over the years.
"It's devastating," said Ruth Beakey. "What pieces do you have to pick up? Where do you go? All that meant to us was in that house."
Fire officials said the worst of the damage was concentrated in back of the home, where the kitchen and sun room were located. They're still investigating to determine the cause.