2 escape burning Vilano Beach home

Two people, dog made it out safe

VILANO BEACH, Fla. - Two people and a dog safely escaped a burning home in Vilano Beach early Friday morning, but much of one of the resident's artwork was destroyed in the fire.

The home was located on Coastal Highway, north of the Vilano Beach Bridge in St. Johns County.

Three people lived in the home. Two were asleep inside, the third was out on a bike ride. When the third person came home, he saw the side of the house on fire and started banging on the door to wake the others up.

"By about 3:30 this morning when they were knocking on the door, I saw smoke and flames everywhere. By the time I got Mr. Johnny up, the whole house was burrowing in clouds of smoke," said Danielle Yarbrough, who lived in the home.

The other occupant, John Rice, said he's a driftwood artist and much of his work was destroyed.

"A lot is lost, at least a lot of smoke damage to the art," Rice said.

Rice has lived at the home for a long time and has friends come and stay with him for periods of time.

"I've known Mr. Johnny for over a year now. A friend of mine introduced me to him," Yarbrough said. "Periodically, I stop in and help him with his artwork here and there. Here in the past few months he's had a few life changes. You know, he's had a couple relatives pass away recently. So I decided to stay over here since I started working on this side of town. I've only been here for about a week now, and it looks like the house is gone for the time being."

Rice and Yarbrough speculated the fire was caused by an electrical problem.

The State Fire Marshal was on scene to investigate.

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