Fire heavily damages home belonging to family of an Erie firefighter

Local News

Fire forces an Erie woman out of her home. When fire crews responded to the scene, it didn’t take long for some of them to recognize the residence.

Within minutes of responding to an Elmwood Avenue house fire with possible entrapment, fire crews were able to extinguish the flames. But, not before it damaged a home that belongs to a family of one of their own.

“Originally, we thought somebody was inside and its the widow of a retired Erie firefighter, so this one kind of hits home. So, when we got here, it was touch and go for a minute not knowing if she was okay.” said Darren Hart, Chief Fire Inspector.

The homeowner’s son explained he was driving nearby and saw smoke in the air. Once he was closer, he realized that it was his mother’s house. Fortunately, she was not inside.

“She’s doing better than I thought she would be doing. My father who passed away was a firefighter in Erie for 36 years, so this is quite the surprise.” said Ron Rzedecki.

Multiple units of the Erie Fire Department responded to the call to put the fire out.

“Literally, probably seconds after arriving, water was on the fire getting it knocked down. Now, there is still quite a bit of smoke damage throughout the house, but mostly on the back side of the house is where most of the fire was.” said Fred Gillespie, Deputy Chief of Erie Fire Department.

Fire investigators believe that the fire started at the back of the house. The cause is still unknown. Inspectors will continue to assess the damage, but they say as they do so, one thing they’ll have in mind is the homeowner.

“She’s always been part of the family. She sent us down dessert during all of the coronavirus stuff going out, which means a lot to us. But, we are here for all of the citizens. This one we just have a special connection with.

The fire department explaining that the cause of the fire is still in the early stages of investigation. The fire victim’s son went on to explain just how thankful he was that his mother wasn’t home and she will stay with him for the time being.

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