COLORADO SPRINGS, Colo. - It was a hot and fast-moving fire that left 20 units and 68 people evacuated at the Sunstone Townhomes Monday.
A little more than 24 hours later residents were allowed back briefly in their homes for the first time.
The Colorado Springs Fire Department said a cigarette that wasn't properly put out that started the blaze, then was accelerated by natural gas.
"This is devastating numerous lives over a small butt," evacuee Yvette Comeau said.
Comeau was home when the fire broke out, her son told her they needed to leave when he spotted the fire down the complex.
"I saw one kitchen chair that was still standing, but it was gutted," Comeau said. "Everything's gone. I don't know what to do now. I guess replace everything that I can, but there's a lot of irreplaceable stuff."
In the building next door, Gregory Davis came to support his daughter through the loss.
"They lost basically everything in there one way or another," Davis said.
Down the row of townhomes, Sierra Hollis was able to find her makeup box still intact in her room.
"We're happy as we can be in this situation, we're trying to keep our spirits up," Hollis said.
Many of the evacuees are leaning on each other and the community for support as they begin the process of rebuilding what the smoke and fire left behind.
"Hopefully we can get through this," Comeau said.