Fire destroys Cherry Grove residence

Firefighters from seven volunteer fire departments battled a house fire at 5221 Cherry Grove Road on Wednesday afternoon while the temperature hovered around ten degrees.

The fire was called in at about 1:28 p.m. for Cherry Grove, Clarendon and Sheffield volunteer fire departments.

Later, calls went out for Glade, Pleasant and Kane VFDs, and Youngsville VFD brought its rehab trailer for cold and tired firefighters.

Mary Lou Wagner, owner of the residence, said the fire began in the northwest corner of the house when they tried to thaw a frozen pipe with a heat gun.

The house, which was built in 1857, was “balloon framed,” with no fire-stops between floors, and the fire quickly spread to the attic and the rest of the house.

Firefighters initially entered the house to fight the fire from within, but at 2:30 p.m. the fire trucks sounded their sirens for an evacuation because the house was fully involved.

By 2:45 p.m., firefighters were trying to limit the blaze, concentrating on saving a garage attached by a breezeway and a vehicle inside. The car could not be driven out, because the keys were inside the house, according to Wagner.