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Help barn employee injured while rescuing horses from tragic Franktown fire

"When we do this type of business, it's a big commitment. It becomes your home."
Posted: 4:15 PM, Nov 29, 2023
Updated: 2023-11-29 21:34:32-05
Eddie Soto Barn Fire

FRANKTOWN, Colo. — An employee who put his life on the line to rescue horses during a tragic barn fire in Franktown has been discharged from the hospital.

Looking after the horses at Hidden Pines Farm was more than a job for Heriberto "Eddie" Soto Sanchez.

"Every day, I would take care of all horses in general," said Soto. "My job was, you know, to feed them, make sure they were fine... We're there 24/7 with them. We learn their personalities. It becomes your home."

That home was lost in a fire that broke out Monday, claiming the lives of several horses and destroying the barn.

"I was really close to every single one of them," Soto said. "I loved them all, you know, in a unique way. And pretty sure they loved me."

Franktown Fire_1.jpeg

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Soto rescued as many horses as he could. He suffered minor burns and smoke inhalation.

"I could hear the fire just kind of growing bigger inside the barn," he recalled. "Horses screaming, horses kicking. I just pretty much did what I could do is to try to get as many doors open. And unfortunately, you know, was only able to save four. I'm just kind of lost for words like right now."

Soto lived on the property with his family. His home was located near the destroyed barn and no longer has water or propane. The Soto family is staying in a rental as they figure out next steps.

"I'm kinda like, right now, just want to make sure that my family's futures covered, you know, because that's all we had right there. And if that's gone, then I'm kind of nervous and afraid of what's gonna happen from here," Soto said.

In the midst of the uncertainty, he's still finding the strength to return to the home he loved.

"It might be weird because some people might not want to see what's left, and I find some kind of a closure just by going back there and just looking at everything and apologizing to the horses for not being able to get to them. And you know, it's a tough thing," he said.


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Denver7 Gives is collecting donations to help Soto and his family cover living expenses during this time. If you would like to help, visit Denver7 Gives and select "Help Eddie Soto after Franktown Barn Fire" from the drop-down menu.

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