BOURBON COUNTY, Ky. (WKYT) - An investigation is underway after three Thoroughbred horses were killed when a barn caught fire in Bourbon County.
Crews from Bourbon and Fayette County responded to the fire just before midnight Saturday at a horse barn just off Paris Pike.
Bourbon County Fire Department Chief Lloyd Campbell says a state trooper spotted the fire and was able to alert residents nearby, "we got three residents here really close... They were home at the time. They were unaware of what happened and the trooper alerted them once he arrived on the scene"
Chief Lloyd says the fire destroyed the horse barn, killing several thoroughbred horses inside, "it was confirmed there was horses or thoroughbreds in the structure itself... Unfortunately the horses didn't make it out. But the barn is gonna be a total loss"
Three thoroughbred yearlings were killed in the fire.
"It is just devastating...that was their living. He loved his horses, he took great care of them," said Glenn Walls, a friend of the owner.
The horse owner tells WKYT he raised the three yearlings and planned to take them to Keeneland's January sale, which is set to begin on Monday.
"You know I've never seen Bob cry in his life and he is crying...he is really hurt," said the owner's friend.
He says he moved to the bluegrass state from Oklahoma because of his love for horses, which is why he has spent about twenty years raising thoroughbreds.
Now, he is dealing with the loss of three animals that he says were much more to him than a hobby or business.
"You grow to love them, they are your kids really," explained Walls.
An investigation into the cause of the fire now underway, as the owner and his friends wonder why this happened.
Walls said, "He can't blame himself, it is something that just happened. He will come back, it will take him awhile to figure it out...but he will be back."
Investigators are expected to be back on the scene Sunday and Monday to try and determine the cause of the fire.