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Fire leaves Arnold family homeless

Eric Felack | Valley News Dispatch - Flames lick out of a rear wall as an Arnold firefighter uses a chainsaw to cut through the vinyl siding at a house on Kenneth Avenue on Sat., April 21, 2013.
<div style='float:right;width:100%;' align='right'><em>Eric Felack  |  Valley News Dispatch</em></div>Flames lick out of a rear  wall as an Arnold firefighter uses a chainsaw to cut through the vinyl siding at a house on Kenneth Avenue on Sat., April 21, 2013.
Eric Felack | Valley News Dispatch - Arnold firefighters work to contain a porch fire in the rear of a house on Kenneth Avenue on Sat., April 21, 2013.
<div style='float:right;width:100%;' align='right'><em>Eric Felack  |  Valley News Dispatch</em></div>Arnold firefighters work to contain a porch fire in the rear of a house on Kenneth Avenue on Sat., April 21, 2013.
Saturday, April 20, 2013, 5:36 p.m.
 

A Saturday afternoon fire left an Arnold woman and her two teenaged sons homeless.

Flames heavily damaged the back of the house at 2118 Kenneth Ave. and the rest of the two-story structure sustained heavy water and smoke damage.

“My older son said all he heard was a noise out back,” said Audrey Mitchell, who has rented the house for four years. Her 19-year-old son wasn't hurt.

She and her younger son, 15, were out getting lunch at the time.

The fire started about 12:45 p.m. near the rear porch and spread quickly to the house, said Arnold fire Chief J.C. Tedorski.

Fire crews initially were dispatched for a brush fire endangering a structure.

“A police officer told me that, when he first got here, he thought he could put it out with a fire extinguisher. Then, the next thing he knew, it had spread to the house,” Mitchell said.

Mitchell said she has renters insurance but isn't sure what losses the policy will cover.

The cause of the fire is still under investigation, Tedorski said.

Jodi Weigand is a staff writer for Trib Total Media. She can be reached at 724-226-4702 or jweigand@tribweb.com.

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