Edmonton

Wildrose Leader's home among those destroyed by Fort McMurray wildfire

Wildrose Leader Brian Jean took a tour early Wednesday of the Waterways neighbourhood, where the house he has owned for 14 years just burned down.

'I've lost some property, but it's just stuff,' says Brian Jean

The home of Wildrose Leader Brian Jean in the Waterways neighbourhood of Fort McMurray was destroyed by the wildfire. (CBC)

Wildrose Leader Brian Jean took a tour early Wednesday of the Waterways neighbourhood, where the house he has owned for 14 years just burned down.

"I had an opportunity to see it today, and it's burned to the ground," Jean said. "Along with 50 years of my life in Fort McMurray and memories and stuff. But that's it, it's just stuff."

The MLA for Fort McMurray-Conklin and the official Opposition leader, Jean tried to put a positive spin on the disaster that struck his hometown.

"It's a great day for the people of Alberta, the people of Fort McMurray," he said. "We have had no reported fatalities, no loss of life, no major injury at all.

"We're successful in that we have had absolutely no loss of life."

He implored those who might still be holed up in their homes to leave immediately, saying the wildfire remains very dangerous.

Brian Jean, Wildrose leader and MLA for Fort McMurray-Conklin, toured the Waterways neighbourhood Wednesday, where his home was destroyed by the wildfire. (CBC)

"Don't take Mother Nature and God for granted. This fire is absolutely a force of nature that has to be reckoned with."

 Jean said the disaster is the latest in a series of economic challenges the community has faced in recent months.

"We're a very resilient community," he said. "We will come back strong. We will rebuild. We will rebuild better than ever, and I'm excited about the prospects."

Download the CBC News app for iOS and Android

now