A fire that officials believe may have started in a chimney and spread to an attic claimed one life on Thursday, Dec. 15.
Ten people were asleep in a home at 7014 Kreuter in Cannon Township, when one resident awoke to check on a crying baby about 1:30 a.m. and discovered the home was filled with smoke, reports stated.
Kent County Sheriff’s (KCS) deputies and Cannon Township firefighters responded to the call of the fire, which had become fully involved. They were assisted by firefighters and equipment from Ada, Plainfield and Grattan townships. After arriving, KCS deputies assisted with the victims and traffic control.
The sheriff’s department report said preliminary investigation indicated that there were 10 people sleeping in the home as it was burning. Once the fire was discovered, one occupant entered the home three times, helping others escape. One resident, 91-year-old Clarence Rewa, was unable to escape the fire. He was pronounced dead at the scene.
Two adult occupants of the home were transported to Spectrum Hospital by Rockford Ambulance for non-life-threatening injuries. All others were medically assessed by EMS on the scene. The Red Cross and the Kent County Victim Advocate team also assisted in the rescue and care efforts.