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Forced from their home

Heritage Manor residents displaced by fire

August 18, 2012
By Garrett Neese ( , The Daily Mining Gazette

HOUGHTON - Residents of Heritage Manor will be out of their home at least a week following a fire at the senior housing complex Friday morning.

No cause is known yet for the fire, which is believed to have started around 10 a.m. in a fifth-floor kitchen.

Two people were taken to Portage Health as a result of the fire, said Robert Megowen of the Houghton Fire Department; one resident who was wheezing and a firefighter who was treated for smoke inhalation.

Article Photos

Daily Mining Gazette/Kurt Hauglie
Smoke and flames billow from the fifth-floor Heritage Manor apartment where a fire started at approximately 10 a.m. Friday.

Most of the approximately 40 Heritage Manor residents were taken to Dee Stadium. They will stay temporarily at Michigan Technological University's Wadsworth Hall dormitory.

"Before we got the first person out of the building, shelter was set up," Megowen said.

Standing on the corner of Huron Street and Montezuma Avenue, two-year Heritage Manor resident Jeff Anderson watched as smoke billowed from the back of the building.

"I was just about to take a shower when I heard the alarms go off," he said. "I saw smoke in the hallway so I knew I had to get out of there. I grabbed my cellphone, charger, checkbook and some cash. That's about all I had time to get."

Most of the fire damage was confined to the fifth floor, although there was water damage throughout the building.

"There's water dripping into the first-floor lobby right now," said Houghton fire fighter Mike Gloss.

One complication in the fire was the lack of a sprinkler system, Gloss said.

"There was nothing in place to help take down the fire," he said.

The Houghton Fire Department was assisted by departments from Hancock, Hurontown, and Calumet Township. Also assisting were the Houghton Police Department, Houghton County Sheriff's Office, Michigan State Police, Mercy EMS and American Red Cross.

While food is not needed, people can donate money or clothing to the Heritage Manor residents, said Houghton Police Lt. Nick Roberts.

To donate, call the city of Houghton at 482-1700, or send donations to the Houghton City Center c/o the Houghton Housing Commission, 616 Shelden Avenue, Houghton, MI 49930.

"This is going to be a long-term thing, so we're going to need help," Roberts said.



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