Widnoon fire

A HOME IN THE Armstrong County village of Widnoon was destroyed by fire on the morning of Memorial Day. A woman and her daughter escaped the burning building but were hospitalized due to injuries.

WIDNOON – A woman and her daughter were hospitalized following a fire that destroyed their home Monday morning in the Widnoon area of Madison Township (Armstrong County).

Tim Kopicko, assistant fire chief for the Templeton-Pine Township Fire Dept., said yesterday (Tuesday) that the home along Mahoning Road in the village of Widnoon, owned by Tom Colwell, was heavily involved with fire when crews arrived after receiving the call around 5:30 a.m. on May 27, Memorial Day.

The home was occupied by Gary Leightley, Sarah Kennedy and her daughter.

By the time crews arrived, Kennedy and the 11-year-old girl had already gotten out of the house, Kopicko said. He said he was told they were both taken to Armstrong County Memorial Hospital in Kittanning before being transported to a Pittsburgh hospital due to smoke inhalation and possibly other burns or injuries.

Kopicko said fire was coming out of the front door and window of the home when crews arrived.

“We were able to get water on it fast,” he said. “The guys did a great job.”

Joining the fight were fire departments from Distant, New Bethlehem, Rimersburg, Rayburn Township, East Brady, Hawthorn and Kittanning.

Kopicko said firefighters attacked the fire from inside the home, but were delayed in gaining access to back bedrooms. The fire spread into the attic area as well, he said.

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He noted that the home was full of many possessions which impacted the fire and the response by firefighters. He said crews were called back to the scene twice later that day to put out small fires that had rekindled.

In addition to the two people who were hurt in the fire, Kopicko said two dogs were killed in the fire and possibly one cat.

He said that he did not believe the structure will be salvageable; however, fire crews were able to save some of the family’s belongings.

A state police fire marshal will investigate to determine the cause of the fire.

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