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Flight instructor spots Macon house fire, calls for help

When fires broke out in two Macon County homes over the weekend, calls for help came in immediately. But one of those...

Posted: Mar 23, 2018 8:43 PM
Updated: Mar 23, 2018 8:43 PM

When fires broke out in two Macon County homes over the weekend, calls for help came in immediately. But one of those calls originated from an unusual source.

A pilot and flight instructor spotted the Hawk Hill Road fire late Sunday afternoon.

Marc Bryson was practicing landing patterns around the Macon County Airport with his student when he spotted smoke from the home. Bryson radioed Brian Ditch at the airport, who then called 911.

"My flight instructor is flying over the Riverbend area and just notified me on the radio that there's a house fire," Ditch reported to 911.

"I've seen house fires from the air. They're usually kind of nasty, smoke-looking. And I want to check it out. I don't want anybody to get hurt just because I didn't feel like calling it," Bryson said.

The home belonged to the Tippetts, who were not home at the time. Their dog was able to escape, so there were no injuries in the fire. They think an electrical problem started the blaze.

The Tippetts, who are staying with relatives next door, said they plan to use insurance money to rebuild.

They saidy they are most grateful to the community for their support and assistance and for the help from a GoFundMe page set that has been set up for them.

Friday, several local restaurants will donate 10 percent of their proceeds to give the Tippetts a helping hand.

The Tippetts are also grateful for the 911 calls from a tight knit community -- and the one that came from the sky.

"They're just always looking out for each other," Ditch said.

"I'm here for the community if there's any way possible," Bryson said.

Early Saturday morning, a home on Ledbetter Hill Drive was destroyed by fire. Fortunately, no one was home then, either. The cause of that blaze remains under investigation.

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