Fire destroys Shenandoah Junction house

Three volunteer firefighters hurt battling the blaze

May 16, 2012|By MATTHEW UMSTEAD |
  • Firefighter Chad Pittinger gives homeowner Evelyn Kain a hug after she arrives at her home which was damaged in an afternoon fire at 264 First St., in Shenandoah Junction, W.Va.
By Yvette May, Staff Photographer

SHENANDOAH JUNCTION, W.Va. — Three volunteer firefighters were injured Wednesday morning while battling a house fire at 264 First St. in Shenandoah Junction, a fire company official said.

Two of the injured firefighters from the Shepherdstown (W.Va.) Fire Department were taken toWashington, D.C., for treatment of what appeared to be nonlife-threatening burns, according to Chief Ben Money of the Citizens Fire Co. in Charles Town, W.Va.

The firefighters were part of a team that were battling the blaze inside the home, Money said.

The third firefighter, from the Citizens Fire Co., was treated at Jefferson Memorial Hospital in Ranson, W.Va., for an arm injury and released, said Money, who in charge of the fire scene.

The firefighter was cutting a hole in the roof to ventilate the fire when he injured his arm, Money said.

The blaze, which was reported just after 10 a.m., appeared to have started on the second floor of the home, but the cause has not been determined, Money said. The home was “heavily involved” when firefighters arrived, he said.


The state fire marshal’s office was contacted to investigate the blaze, but Money said Wednesday morning that he did not have any reason to believe the fire was suspicious “at this point.”

No one was home when a neighbor spotted smoke coming from the home, homeowner Evelyn Kain said.

Kain said she was at work at Royal Vendors about two miles away, and her son, Scott, who lives with her, was helping a neighbor up the street with a car repair when the fire started.

“When I left (for work), everything was fine,” Kain said.

Five dogs and two cats at the residence survived the blaze, according to Evelyn Kain and Money.
Diesel, a cat that Evelyn Kain had feared succumbed in an upstairs bedroom, later was found on the first

floor of the home, stuck under a chest, Money said.

“She was ecstatic when we carried it out,” he said.

Due to extensive fire damage on the second floor and roof, Money said the home is probably a total loss.

From outside the home, Kain said the areas that appeared damaged the most were her son’s bedroom and the attic.

Money said there was no fire damage on the first floor of the wood-frame home, which Kain said was probably about 100 years old.

Kain, 73, said she has resided there for 39 or 40 years.

Firefighters from Citizens Fire Co. and Shepherdstown were joined by personnel from Independent Fire Co. in Ranson; Bakerton and Middleway volunteer fire departments in Jefferson County; Baker Heights Volunteer Fire Department in Berkeley County; and firefighters from Washington and Frederick County, Md., including units from Boonsboro, Brunswick, Potomac Valley and Sharpsburg.

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