A “stubborn” weekend fire damaged the Baltimore Highlands family home of the president of the English Consul Volunteer Fire Department, sent three people to the hospital and killed several pets.
Two family members were among the first responders arriving to fight the Saturday night blaze, a few doors from the fire station.
One resident had to jump from a second-floor window of the two-story, wood framed home as flames advanced, said Robert Bury Jr., chief of the volunteer fire department.
Baltimore County fire crews were dispatched to the Michigan Avenue house at 9:14 p.m. Saturday and spent two hours battling the blaze, according to Capt. Julia Dillard of the county fire department.
The cause of the fire remains under investigation, Dillard said, and an estimate of damages was not available.
The house is home to Donald “Duck” Condon, president of the English Consul Volunteer Fire Department, his wife, Mary, and their three children. Eight people were living in the home, Bury said, including Mary’s mother, the Condon’s oldest son Brandon, his girlfriend and a roommate.
Two of the Condon’s children, Noah, 19, and Emily, 17, are active members of the fire department, Bury said. The family has been involved with the fire department for about 15 years, he said.
“This is a family that has done so much for the community,” he said. “It’s pretty much our obligation to get stuff together and take care of this family.”
Crews arrived to Mary Condon on the ground, after she jumped from a second story window as flames spread, Bury said.
Bury described the fire as “stubborn” and said Donald and Noah Condon were among first responders at the scene.
“When we arrived, it was very chaotic,” he said.
The firefighters were aware the call was at the home of the company’s president, about seven houses away from the station, Bury said.
Dillard said one adult was sent to the shock trauma center of the University of Maryland hospital system in Baltimore and one was sent to a local hospital with non-life-threatening injuries. One firefighter was evaluated for minor injuries and was released that night.
Several pets — three birds, two cats and a dog — perished in the fire, Bury said. One dog rescued by firefighters is being treated at an animal hospital for smoke inhalation.
The house was insured, Bury said.
Cyndi Ryan, a spokeswoman for the American Red Cross Greater Chesapeake Region, said those impacted were assisted with lodging and funds to take care of food, clothing and medicine. Case workers are now working on getting them back to a pre-disaster state, which is a process that can take up to a few months, she said.
Bury was not at liberty to discuss where the family is staying, saying they are in a safe location in the area.
A fundraising campaign on the crowd-sourcing website GoFundMe has received 150 donations from friends, family and neighbors in two days, totaling $9,210 of its $15,000 goal.
“It’s unbelievable how a community pulls together to get these people back on their feet in a safe environment,” he said.
Half of the social hall at the fire station on Michigan Avenue is filled with donated clothing for the eight people who lost their belongings in the fire, Bury said.
Founded in 1944, the fire department has about 150 members, 54 of them being firefighters, Bury said. The department’s fleet includes two engines and a paramedic unit.
The fire department primarily serves Baltimore Highlands and goes into Lansdowne, Halethorpe, Arbutus and Catonsville when necessary, Bury said.
“It’s heartwarming to know there are so many people who care that are willing to give them whatever they can, from clothing to toothpaste and toothbrushes and deodorant,” he said. “It’s amazing.”