TAYLORSVILLE — A woman escaped a fire in her house Wednesday morning and firefighters saved the family’s dog and cat.
German Township Volunteer Fire Department received a call at 8:26 a.m. about a structure fire at 1260 Pearl St., located about two blocks north of Taylorsville Elementary School. When firefighters arrived they found the kitchen engulfed in flames.
Wade and Margaret Goodin have owned the single-story, three-bedroom home for 40 years, and live there with their granddaughter, Whitney Goodin, Margaret Goodin said.
Margaret Goodin, 73, said she was the only one home at the time of the fire, as her husband, 74, and granddaughter, 28, were both at work. Margaret Goodin added that she was preparing for a doctor’s appointment and was in the shower when the fire started.
Story continues below gallery
“I heard the fire alarm go off at the time and I thought the water in the shower was too hot and made it go off. I heard it go off but it didn’t stop, and I thought I smelled something burning,” she said.
As Margaret Goodin got out of the shower and walked down the hall, she heard crackling. When she looked into the kitchen she saw fire on the stove and in the cabinets, she said.
“It’s frightening when you see that and you realize it’s so destructive,” Margaret Goodin said.
She went into a front bedroom, punched out the window screen, climbed out the window and went to the home of her neighbors, Jeff and Melissa Kirk, where Melissa Kirk called 911, Margaret Goodin said.
German Township, along with help from the fire departments in Columbus and Harrison townships, and Clifford got the fire under control by about 9 a.m., said Matt Lynch, deputy chief of German Township Volunteer Fire Department.
Columbus Township Fire and Rescue Chief Dave Thompson found the family’s 7-year-old Clumber Spaniel, Heidi, behind a recliner in the living room and the 4-year-old cat, Rascal, under the bed in the front bedroom.
Thompson comforted the dog and administered some oxygen while Brittany Lazzell with Columbus Regional Hospital’s ambulance service cut some melted plastic out of Heidi’s fur. The grateful dog gave Thompson a kiss.
He delivered Heidi and Rascal, both uninjured, to Margaret Goodin, who was resting on a couch at the Kirk household. She expressed relief to have her pets safe, but with tears in her eyes said the image of the fire was tough to shake.
“I don’t think I’ll ever get that out of my mind,” she said.
The Bartholomew County Fire Inspector investigated the scene. The fire is believed to have started in the kitchen on or near the stove. While the exact cause of the fire is undermined, it was unintentional, Lynch said.
Margaret Goodin said her husband had cooked some food on the stove in the morning, but that the stove had been turned off before 6 a.m. She said that she had moved a basket with some snacks from the laundry room to the top of the stove some time before she got into the shower.
The fire was contained to the kitchen, but that area suffered significant damage. The living room suffered moderate smoke damage and other parts of the house had smoke damage, Lynch said.
German Township Capt. Chris Gephart, the incident commander at the scene, estimated damage to the house at $30,000 and damage to contents at another $30,000.
Wade Goodin later returned home from work to check on his wife and see the damage to the house where they raised their two children. He said the news was tough to take.
“You think about what you would do if it happened, and when it does happen you can’t think,” he said.
Margaret Goodin said she, her husband and granddaughter plan to stay at her sister’s house in Columbus for now.
The Bartholomew County Sheriff’s Department also assisted at the scene.