Flames spread through a Lake City home early Thursday when the resident tried to start a fire in a fireplace that had previously been sealed, officials said.
Seattle firefighters responded to the scene, in the 7500 block of Lake City Way, at around 2 a.m. after receiving reports of smoke and flames at a residence there.
The home's occupant, an older gentleman, was rescued from the home and crews extinguished the flames. The man was uninjured.
Firefighters were hampered in their response due to the large amount of material that had been hoarded in the home.
A preliminary investigation found that the home's resident had started a fire in a fireplace that had been sealed up, causing the blaze to spread to the adjoining rooms.
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“He was a walking angel.”
That’s how Tinya Anderson, a Mercer Island resident, describes Kirk Robinson, a born-and-raised Islander and lieutenant for the Bothell Fire Department (BFD).
Robinson died Oct. 4 at the age of 42. He is survived by parents Gary and Lori, brother Clay, wife Jessica and their two children, Gavin (10) and Levi (8).
Pat Angell, who neighbored the Robinson family decades ago, remembers the firefighter as “the sweetest little boy” growing up.
“He did so much for anybody,” she recalled.
Robinson graduated from Mercer Island High School in 1995. Later, he studied kinesiology and sports medicine at Westmont College. In 1999, he joined Mercer Island’s auxiliary firefighting force; then, in April 2001, he was hired to work at BFD full time.
The Spokane Valley Fire Department has put out a 2020 calendar full of historical photos and facts in honor of its 80th anniversary.
Capt. Scott Crawford took the lead on putting the project together. “I’ve been here 25 years,” he said. “You hear stories, and you tuck them away. It was a lot of fun to make.”
The department was formed as Spokane County Fire Protection District 1 in 1940. The first fire station was little more than a low-slung barn in a field. It dropped the word “Protection” along the way and in 2007 formally changed its name to the Spokane Valley Fire Department.
Each month on the calendar features a different station (there are 10) or fire department facility. Crawford and firefighter Marcus Duarte traveled the department, taking pictures of each station, it’s engine and the crews.
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The chief of Whatcom County Fire District 16 says the burglar or burglars who broke into one of his unmanned fire stations should be ashamed of themselves for stealing from taxpayers.
Right now, investigators are trying to figure who was responsible for the break-in at Station 87 in the Van Zandt area.
At first, Chief Hank Maleng says everything seemed normal when he arrived at Station 87 at approximately 8:15 a.m. Monday to take an ambulance out for some service work.
That quickly changed when he stepped up to the door.
"I realized there was a dent and markings where you could tell a pry bar or some type of tool had been used to pry open the door of our station," Maleng told KOMO News.
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Spokane Valley firefighters are raising money to buy coats for kids in the Central Valley, West Valley and East Valley school districts with Operation Warm. The station raised $9,000 so far.
The department hopes to visit every school in the community Spokane Valley Firefighters serve, according to spokesperson Julie Happy.
Last year firefighters delivered 425 coats to kids who didn't have one in Spokane Valley. The department hopes to surpass that number during this year's drive.
There are 22,678 students enrolled in the Central Valley, East Valley and West Valley school districts. Around 10 thousand of those students are classified as low income, and 622 are classified as homeless.
"Receiving a coat from a Firefighter is a great memory for these kids,” said Spokane Valley Firefighter, Scott Niebuhr.
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