It’s always a bad idea to leave a candle burning in an unoccupied space. You never know when fate will strike. For instance, Pretty Paws the Cat, may choose to stroll by, knocking the flickering candle into the hanging draperies. It’s unknown if any felines were involved, but an unattended candle did cause a fire in a home in the 300-block of Garfield Avenue, shortly after 7 PM Tuesday evening.  

It only took three minutes for Battle Creek firefighters to arrive at the scene, where they saw smoke and fire coming from a second-story bedroom.  

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Crews from Engine 2 and Squad 2 dragged a hose through the home and up the stairs to extinguish the fire. The blaze was quickly brought under control within 10-minutes, minimizing damage which is estimated at $15,000. After the blaze was extinguished, the crew from Truck 1 ventilated the structure, while teams from Rescue 3 and Engine 5 performed support functions.  

All of the occupants were able to exit the home, prior to the arrival of the firefighters. Two occupants were treated on the scene for smoke inhalation. It was determined that a candle, in the second-story bedroom, was the cause of the fire. 

This all reminds me of a Friday evening High School football game in Galesburg, back in 1970. My buddy Gary, and I, were at the game when we heard the siren at the firehouse begin blaring. The sound of firetruck sirens began to grow as firefighters headed to the northside of Galesburg. Gary looked at me, with a faraway look in his eyes, and said, “Wow man, it sounds like they’re headed towards my neighborhood. I did leave a candle burning in my bedroom.” 

Gary and I loaded into my 1964 Ford Fairlane and headed to his home, a commune on Maple Street. As we arrived, Galesburg firefighters were tossing a smoldering mattress from the second-story window of the young hippy’s bedroom.  

Gary, with a dazed look on his face, slowly said, “Bummer...man...” 

Mysterious House Fire in Abandoned Ohio Neighborhood

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