Firefighters from Griswold and Elliott were called to the scene of a house fire at 305 4th Street Thursday afternoon. The call came in at around 3:36-p.m.
House fire at 305 4th St. in Griswold. (Ric Hanson/Photo)
Griswold Fire Chief Jim Wyman says he was working in his nearby shop when the call came in. He said he looked out and saw black smoke rising from the house, which was owned by one of his firemen, Severin Ritter. Wyman got to the fire station and told his crews to expedite their arrival.
Wyman said Ritter was standing outside, looking very upset, but there was nothing that could be done expect to try and put out the flames. Wyman said while the cause of the fire remains to be determined, it was clear it had been smoldering for at least three or four hours. The house sustained severe damage, but a dollar amount was not immediately available.
Neither Ritter, nor his wife and twin sons were home at the time, but two family pets, a cat and a dog were inside the home. Ritter, who has been a member of the Griswold Fire Department for the past four-years, managed to rescue the animals before he went to the fire station. They appeared to be in shock and suffering from smoke inhalation.
Family pets rescued from the home of Griswold Firefighter Severin Ritter.
The cat’s fur was apparently singed as well. None of the fire fighters or anyone else was injured during the blaze. The family was expected to stay with relatives in the area until a more permanent housing situation can be found. Wyman says the house has been undergoing remodeling since it was purchased about four or five-years ago.