Monday, June 6 2011 3:25 PM EDT2011-06-06 19:25:19 GMT
Country music superstar Trace Adkins returned to Middle Tennessee after fire destroyed his home Saturday. Adkins was on a plane to Alaska Saturday when the home was engulfed by flames. more>>
by Brent Frazier
BRENTWOOD, Tenn. -- Not even 16 Brentwood Fire Department firefighters, backed up by roughly 10 additional men and women called in, were able to save country superstar Trace Adkins' home Saturday afternoon. But the singer's wife, Rhonda, remained overjoyed in spite of it all that her family was able to safely escape.
Rhonda Adkins took advantage of the catastrophic event to remind families everywhere the importance of pre-planning for emergencies like this.
"If anything ever happens, this is where you run to. So people can see you," Mrs. Adkins said, referring to the tree the family had designated as a meeting place in such an emergency.
The Adkinses even tied a yellow marking ribbon around the tree, never dreaming the protocol the family had rehearsed would ever morph into a real-life emergency.
"Trace is really big on safety," she pointed out. Mrs. Adkins even insisted the family kept nothing flammable in the attached, three-car garage where the fire undoubtedly started Saturday afternoon.
Lindsi Weaver, of Smyrna, the Adkinses' nanny, is being credited with getting everyone out safely, after hearing some type of loud explosion coming from the garage. Brianna Adkins, age 9; Trinity Adkins, 6; and a neighbor friend were all hustled safely out of the home by Weaver.
Rhonda Adkins was driving home from the airport when she got word of the fire. Her superstar husband, she said, was on a flight to Alaska with band members for a weekend work trip/pleasure getaway, she said, oblivious to what was unfolding back home.
Trace Adkins has two older daughters by a different woman, who live elsewhere. His and Rhonda Adkins' third daughter, Mackenzie, an 8th grader, was also on an away trip this weekend and, just like her father, was unaware of the family emergency.
"He's going to want to come home," Rhonda Adkins admitted, predicting her husband's reaction to the news. But Mrs. Adkins said she planned to insist he remain on his R-and-R getaway, adding that her husband "will just stress me out," she laughed.
The couple's home, or what's left of it, is on Millsford Court in the Bon Brooke subdivision in Brentwood, Williamson County. It will be under 'round the clock surveillance, by the family's own privately hired security firm, according to Brentwood Police Chief Ricky Watson.
Chief Watson additionally vowed to step up patrols in that area this weekend, given the family's high profile status. The chief also promised a criminal charge of trespass for any looters busted on the property. Fire investigators should be back on the scene first thing Sunday morning.