More than 8,500 firefighters continue to battle the Thomas fire in Southern California that’s burned more than 700 homes and claimed the life of a firefighter.

Christmas is just eight days away and the new year is right around the corner. A team of about 100 firefighting personnel from the Sacramento area are heading to the fire line to relieve their colleague already there.

Captain Jeff Incerty with the Sacramento Metropolitan Fire Department has been there nearly two weeks—more than 300 miles away from his wife, Lindsay, daughter, Lela, and son, Wyatt, in Rocklin.

The family spoke with ABC10 News about the challenges being away from each other during the holiday season.

“You know it’s challenging being away from my family during the holidays," Jeff Incerty said. "We’ve been down here for several weeks but It’s challenging but you know we keep things in perspective.”

The firefighter of 11 years said while it’s difficult to be away from his family, nothing can compare to the devastation and loss families are dealing with in Southern California.

Captain Incerty is expected to return home on Tuesday or Wednesday, and another team will be sent to down for relief.