The leader of Alberta's Opposition has confirmed that his home is one of many that burned as a wildfire tore through the Fort McMurray area.
Brian Jean, leader of the Wildrose Party and MLA for Fort McMurray-Conklin, told Global News that his nephew called with the news as he fled the area on Tuesday evening.
"I understand my own home is in flames," Jean told the network in a phone interview.
The politician urged residents to "please, please, please get out" of the area as the flames spread.
"We cannot replace lives," Jean told News Talk 770 radio. "Now is not the time to be a hero."
Brian Jean. (Photo: Jason Franson/CP)
The massive wildfire — which started on Sunday — has forced the largest fire-related evacuation order in Alberta's history, with tens of thousands of people ordered from their homes.
On Monday, Jean took to his Facebook page to thank emergency crews working to control the fire.
"I offer my sincere gratitude to all the dedicated volunteers, staff, firefighters, pilots and other first responders. You are what makes Fort McMurray one of the strongest communities in Alberta," he wrote.
The politican has lived in Fort McMurray since he was four years old, after moving there from B.C. in 1967.
The Huffington Post Alberta has reached out to Jean for comment.
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