Resident, 91, escapes burning home


By Joe Moskowitz
It is a scene that has become all too familiar of late; firefighters desperately trying to save a  structure that was already lost to flames before they could get there.

It was early Sunday morning and Hank McCann of Dunraven felt a little cold. He went into the basement of his Ben Meeker Road mobile home to add some wood to the fire. But when he got there he saw wires arcing and flames that had spread well beyond the furnace and were about to engulf his entire home.

McCann is 91 years old and has lived by himself for the past five years, so for his safety, he wears a medical-alert pendant. Sensing the emergency, he pushed the button and he told the person who answered that his home was on fire. He was told to get out of the home and the medical alert service called the Margaretville Fire Department for him.

Went to brother’s home
McCann made it out safely and was able to make it to his brother’s home, about 100 feet away, on Ben Meeker Road. Medical staff treated him at the scene for a spike in blood pressure, but he credits to the pendant he was wearing for saving his life.

His nephew, Louis McCann, while looking at the still smoldering remains of his uncle’s home two days later, said Hank lost everything in the fire. He is staying with his sister who lives a bit further up Ben Meeker Road.

The McCanns believe the fire started in the furnace and aren’t sure why the wires were arcing at the same time.