Archive for Wednesday, December 17, 2008

Fire engulfs Baldwin City home

One Baldwin City couple loses its home to a fire Tuesday night.

December 17, 2008, 2:59 a.m. Updated December 17, 2008, 4:17 p.m.

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Fire engulfs Baldwin City home

Crews from at least four area fire departments responded to a house fire in Baldwin City late Tuesday night. Enlarge video

A rural Baldwin City home was destroyed by fire late Tuesday night.

The home, at 1854 N. 250 Road, was engulfed in flames as thick plumes of smoke poured into the sky and parts of the home began falling to the ground.

Firefighters were dispatched at 11:22 p.m., and the blaze was declared under control at 2:20 a.m. Wednesday.

Randy DeMersseman, Palmyra Township Fire Department chief, said no cause for the fire had been determined.

“We don’t have a damage estimate yet,” he said, “but it’s a total loss.”

Virgil Allen and his wife, Ellen, were the two residents at the house when the fire erupted. Both escaped unharmed.

Baldwin City Police Chief Mike McKenna sent an officer to the scene Wednesday and said the Allens are asking for donations of size 2X sweat pants, shirts and sweatshirts, along with socks. Those can be dropped off at the police station and will be delivered to the fire victims, he said.

A relief fund for the family has also been established at Baldwin State Bank. Contributors should make checks payable to The Allen Relief Fund.

The house was down a hill, making it difficult for heavy equipment to navigate. As firefighters battled the fire in frigid weather, fire trucks had to be towed up the hill by a tractor.

— Reporter Brian Lewis-Jones contributed information to this story.

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