A Massachusetts resident may have saved the life of an Enfield woman who was sleeping while a fire was ravaging her home Friday morning.
Greg Devine of Longmeadow was driving on Enfield Street when he saw a considerable amount of smoke coming from a house on Park Avenue.
"I saw the smoke and decided to stop, and some ladies on the porch said they had called 911," Devine said from the
Devine said no one answered when he knocked on the door of the first floor of the three-family home, so he went to the second floor. There, he banged on the door and woke a resident, identified by NBC 30 as Molly Porter, who had been sleeping as smoke began filling her home.
"There was a lot of smoke in that room, and embers were coming out fast, so I made sure she got out," Devine said.
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Porter's father said of Devine, "He is a true hero."
Garrick Orsatti, who lives on the first floor, said he was at work when neighbors called to tell him about the fire.
"The second floor has two cats, and they are okay," Orsatti said. "The third floor also has a cat, but I'm not sure about it, because the residents there have not returned yet. Everybody got out, which is a great thing. All that's lost is stuff, but stuff you can replace."
The fire was reported at 8:56 a.m., and responded to the scene. The blaze apparently started on the second floor of the wood frame home, which was built in 1915, according to Enfield public land records.
"Once it blew out the front windows, it took over the second and third floor porches, and extended to the third floor," said Mark Zarcaro, public information officer for the Enfield fire departments.
Firefighters were hampered by a strong wind from the west, "which caused the fire to intensify until companies were able to get large attack lines and deck guns into operation," Zarcaro said.
Thick black smoke at times blocked the bright sun.
Fire officials reported the blaze was under control around 11 a.m., but crews remained on the scene to deal with "hot spots". The building will most likely need to be demolished, a fire official said.
David Longhi, who owns the property, said, "I spent three years renovating the house, and everything was perfect."
The cause of the fire is still under investigation.