The Cunningham Volunteer Department responded to a call of a Structure fire on Salem Road at around 11:30am on Sunday September 19th 2010. There were assisted at the scene by the Palmyra Volunteer Fire Department, Montgomery County EMS, the Montgomery County Sheriff’s Department, and the American Red Cross. A total of 26 firefighters responded to the blaze, Captain William Jackson from the Cunningham Fire Department was the Incident Commander.
When Cunningham Firefighter Jeff Wright arrived on scene he found the home at 451 Salem Road engulfed in flames. The fire was rapidly spreading towards the attic. The back of the home had already collapsed sending flaming debris into the yard starting several grass fires which were moving towards the nearby woods. This became one of the first areas targeted by firefighters to prevent a house fire from becoming a forest fire.
The house was home to the Bobbie Waynick and her family for the last 35 years, through her children had grown up and left home to raise families of their own. According Bobbie’s son David Shipley, “”The bright spot was that no one was home when the fire started.” He has fond memories of growing up in the house “I grew up here and it seemed like a much bigger house back then, then it did now,” he said.
Due to the advanced state of the fire before they arrived, firefighters were unable to save the home despite their valiant efforts. The cause of the fire is currently unknown.
A major concern during and after the fire was the keeping the firefighters rehabilitated, according to Cecil Stout from the American Red Cross “In the time it takes for a firefighter to go through one tank of air, the firefighter uses as much electrolytes as your or I would during a full days work.” to this end firefighters are provided with plenty of water or gatorade, and salty or sweet snacks. The Red Cross also brought out their misting fans which were used to help cool the firefighters down after they came out from fighting the blaze.
While the fire was being battled, a Red Cross case worker busy helping identify the needs of the residents of the home. The Red Cross provides assistance to ensure that the displaced residents have a place to say, food to eat, and clothing to wear. They provide this kind of assistance 24 hours a day, 365 days a year.
The local chapter of the American Red Cross can always use your help to ensure that this kind if assistance is always readily available to fire victims. You can help them by making a donation at the new Red Cross offices located at 1760 Madison Avenue in Clarksville, TN, or online at the American Red Cross Web site. Always select the donate locally option to keep your donation right here in our community! For more information about how you can best help them, or for assistance, contact the Red Cross at (931) 645-6401.