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Valley News Dispatch

Fire destroys home along Bear Creek Road in Buffalo Township

| Thursday, Dec. 8, 2016, 1:12 p.m.
Firefighters from Buffalo Township and surrounding communities battled a two-alarm fire at a house along Bear Creek Road on Thursday, Dec. 8, 2016.
Louis B. Ruediger | Tribune-Review
Firefighters from Buffalo Township and surrounding communities battled a two-alarm fire at a house along Bear Creek Road on Thursday, Dec. 8, 2016.
Firefighters look inside what remains of a house along Bear Creek Road in Buffalo Township after a fire tore through the structure on Thursday, Dec. 8, 2016.
Louis B. Ruediger | Tribune-Review
Firefighters look inside what remains of a house along Bear Creek Road in Buffalo Township after a fire tore through the structure on Thursday, Dec. 8, 2016.
Winfield Fire Chief John Hartman and Chris Dean, Saxonburg's first assistant chief, plan their attack on a house fire at 404 Bear Creek Road, Buffalo Township on Thursday, Dec. 8, 2016.
Louis B. Ruediger | Tribune-Review
Winfield Fire Chief John Hartman and Chris Dean, Saxonburg's first assistant chief, plan their attack on a house fire at 404 Bear Creek Road, Buffalo Township on Thursday, Dec. 8, 2016.

A Buffalo Township family lost their longtime home Thursday when fire swept through their dwelling along Bear Creek Road.

The fire, first reported shortly before noon Thursday at 404 Bear Creek Road, heavily damaged the house.

Homeowner Nancy Hill said she lived at the house with her son, Jay. Neither was home at the time, but Hill said her four dogs died in the blaze.

Come February, she would have lived there 34 years.

“A lot of memories,” she said.

Hill said she was at work when a neighbor called her and told her about the fire.

“I came home, and they couldn't get my dogs out,” Hill said.

She said she and her son likely will stay with family in Fawn.

The fire's cause was not immediately known, according to Lt. Kip Johnston of the Buffalo Volunteer Fire Department.

He said, when firefighters arrived, there was smoke pouring from “every corner of the house.

“That's all we were — in defensive mode.”

Close to 10 fire departments responded. Johnson said crews had it knocked down in about half an hour.

Amy Haponski, whose home on Sarver Road is adjacent to Hill's, backed her car out of her driveway and into her backyard to make room for Sarver Volunteer Fire Company Truck 36-2. That allowed its crew to train a hose on the fire from above using an extended ladder.

“Obviously, it's very devastating to a good friend and neighbor,” said Katie Mahlmeister, who lives next door.

Andrew Erickson is a Tribune-Review staff writer. Reach him at 724-226-4675 or aerickson@tribweb.com.

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