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Fires led to extra gratitude over Thanksgiving holiday

Updated: Jan 12, 2023

A house fire on North 5th, in Connell, left the Ramirez family without a home for the holidays. However, they had much to be grateful for this Thaksgiving. Things could have been much worse. The fire broke out in the wee hours of the morning on Wednesday, Nov 23, and the family was fast asleep inside. Neighbor, Mark Armstead happened to see the fire, called it in and then woke up the family. That’s what saved their lives.

The call came in to volunteer firefighters at 12:05 am. and wasn’t closed until 4:19 am. The bitter cold and frozen night didn’t help matters. There was no word on what started the blaze. The home was a total loss.

The family, while losing everything, has what is most important, each other. They also had home owners insurance, which is assisting them. They were set up in a hotel for the holiday. The Red Cross was also assisting the family of six (2 children, 2 teenagers, mom and dad).

The Connell Heritage Museum was grateful, as well, after an electrical issue was caught before it led to a larger fire at the old Presbyterian church on Wednesday, Nov 23. They shared their gratitude on social media expressing, “The Museum is Thankful today! We could have lost our 1904 church today by FIRE but God was watching over our museum for sure! While hanging Christmas lights today, we noticed the furnace, several lights, and outlets weren’t working so we asked Dave Abenth to come and look. He found an issue with the power lines coming into the church from the meter so we called Franklin PUD. They came out in less than an hour from Pasco and found a line coming into the meter smoldering, frayed and sparking! They shut the power off at the transformer and it will be fixed the day after Thanksgiving. It’s the oldest church building in Franklin County and it would have caught fire if we weren’t there today and noticed the issue and called for help. If you notice anything odd about your electricity, get it checked right away!”

Sue Mingee, the victim of the fire we reported on last week at the hotel, also shared her gratitude on social media. She shared, “I want to thank my Circle K family! They have made dealing with my place burning and losing everything including My cat a little easier. I am grateful for the help and support from people. I have lost so much in a few minutes, but thanks to everyone I am slowly working on getting my life back.”

You may support each of these families hit by fire this holiday season - to find out more contact Katrina at Kaffrin’s Coffee.




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