Elderly Couple Dead, 80 Homes Burn in California Wildfire

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LAKE ISABELLA, Calif. (AP) — A vast and voracious wildfire that has burned at least 80 homes in central California killed an elderly couple as they tried to flee, authorities said. The two were outside their house when they were overcome with smoke, Kern County Sheriff Donny Youngblood said at a Friday evening news conference on the fire that has burned nearly 47 square miles and forced the evacuation of 1,500 homes near Lake Isabella, a popular recreation area east of Bakersfield. The names of the two dead, whose bodies were found Friday, have not been released. The sheriff said his department hasn’t been able to search very extensively and would be looking through burned homes with cadaver dogs seeking more possible victims. At least 80 houses were destroyed as the fire leveled neighborhoods and forced thousands to flee. David Klippel, 78, a retired police officer, said he didn’t see much of a threat after receiving an automated call advising him to leave. That changed dramatically within an hour Thursday afternoon. “I’ve never been so close to a fast-moving, ferocious fire. It was unbelievable,” said Klippel, who later learned his house had caught fire. “I almost didn’t have time to