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Fire ends in tragedy for metro family

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NICHOLS HILLS, Okla. -- A fire ended in tragedy for a metro family.

They returned home Sunday to sad news.

Their home was destroyed with their dog inside.

Unfortunately, he didn’t survive.

It was a huge loss for the family.

The Johnsons have lived in their home in Nichols Hills since 1982 and raised their kids there.

They were driving back from Stroud Sunday afternoon when a neighbor called to tell them their house was on fire.

Sadly, their dog was killed in that fire.

Thick, black smoke billowed from every window and every door of the Johnsons’ home on Grand Blvd.

Wally and his wife comforted each other outside the home they’d lived in for more than 30 years.

“[I’m] kind of [in] disbelief, kind of shock,” Wally Johnson said.

It’s hard to imagine a home full of memories could be gone so quickly.

“When our crews showed up they had heavy fire showing from the garage area,” Nichols Hills Fire Chief Kevin Boydston said.

That’s where fire investigators think the fire started around 2:00 Sunday afternoon.

You could see the smoke all over Nichols Hills.

Neighbors showed up in floods.

“You couldn't tell what it was at first and then finally you could see a car through it as they were putting some of it out,” Thomas Wisdon said.

The fire spread quickly through the two-story house.

Crews from Nichols Hills, Oklahoma City, and The Village all showed up to put out the flames.

“After we made the knock on the fire we were able to go in and check for hot spots, make sure it hadn't got in the attic yet,” Boydston said.

That’s when firefighters found the family’s 11-year-old dog in the master closet upstairs.

She didn’t survive.

The news was hard for Wally to tell his grandson, who’d just spent the night there.

“The one that's five years old asked if his new bike was gone. I told him the bike was gone and our dog was gone, so that was hard on him,” Johnson said.

While firefighters spent hours on the scene inspecting the house and talking with the family, more neighbors showed up to offer hugs and show their support.

It was the best thing the Johnsons could ask for after a day like this.

“It’s great to have a lot of support, great family and friends, it's awesome,” Johnson said.

There’s no word yet on how much damage was done.

Fire investigators are still trying to determine the cause of the fire.