Flames towered above Ashley Court Apartments early Thursday morning. Patricia Grant was watching.

“We saw a whole bunch of flames and fire going everywhere,” she says waving her arms.

Forty firefighters battled an apartment fire that left at least 20 people without a home. The good news is nobody was hurt.

“My sister came outside and there was so much smoke that you couldn’t see nothing,” Grant says. “She had to go back in the house because she couldn’t stay out here.”

If you ask her and others, you can’t predict something like this, watching a building burn so close.

An explosion woke many and the rest heard fire alarms and sirens. Everyone got out but almost everything is lost.

Red Cross is helping victims of the fire, putting 12 families up in hotels. Director, Theo Boots says she expects they’ll be helping those families back on their feet for a while.

“It’s kind of sad,” Tony Brown says. He’s sitting on the curb across the street from the charred building. He’s just 14 years-old and watched firefighters battle through the apartment for hours.

“I never thought that this complex would catch on fire,” he says. “There’s probably a lot of memories in that house.”

Clean-up started after the fire department left. A backhoe was ripping out blackened rubble. Wood had become charcoal and springs from mattresses is the only thing left.

Tony and so many others are thankful nobody was hurt. Now the healing begins.