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Palmyra family loses home in blaze

Palmyra family loses home in blaze
Palmyra family loses home in blaze
Firefighters extinguish the blaze that destroyed a mobile home last Wednesday afternoon off Crawford Road. The William Smith family lost all their belongings and had no insurance. (Photo by Jo Ann Spieth-Saylor)

A Palmyra family lost all of their possessions last Wednesday afternoon, Aug. 16, when their home was destroyed by fire.
Kathrine Smith said she was online on her computer when her four-year-old grandson told her and his mother that something was wrong. That’s when Smith said they discovered some clothes that were hanging above the dryer were on fire.
Smith said she attempted to reach another area of the trailer to retrieve her purse, but ‘it was too far gone.’
The three people escaped from the home with only the clothing they were wearing. Smith’s husband, William, was at work at the time but arrived home while firefighters were still at the scene.
‘Prayers, that’s what we need,’ Kathrine Smith said when asked what people could do to help them.
The Smiths were buying the trailer, located in the 12000 block of Crawford Road, on contract and had no homeowner’s insurance. Celine Brooks has established an account for the Smiths at PNC Bank. Donations may be made in their name.
Chad Gerlach, chief of the Palmyra Volunteer Fire Dept., said they received the call about 3:25 p.m. last Wednesday that the residence was on fire.
‘It appeared to start by the dryer,’ he said. ‘We’re assuming it was electrical.’
The single-wide trailer had an addition on it to the west, which was also consumed by the fire.
In addition to Palmyra VFD, firefighters from Ramsey and Milltown Volunteer Fire departments and Harrison County Hospital Emergency Management Services responded.
Gerlach said they cleared the scene just before 7 p.m., but were paged back later when the fire rekindled. It was about 9:30 p.m. when they left the second time.

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