Firefighters in Kingston, New Hampshire, responded Sunday evening to a 2-alarm blaze that was anything but typical for them. Crews quickly learned they were battling flames at the home of one of their own -- none other than Kingston Fire Chief Graham Pellerin.
Multiple fire departments from nearby communities responded around 5:40 p.m. to Pellerin's family home located at 9 Woodland Drive in Kingston.
Chief Pellerin, his wife, their son and two dogs were all home at the time but they made it out safely without injury, fire officials said.
Crews encountered heavy fire showing on arrival, prompting a second alarm. And while firefighters were keenly aware of where they were battling a fire, their professionalism and training swiftly kicked in.
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East Kingston Fire Chief Ed Warren, who took command of the scene to allow Chief Pellerin to focus on his family and personal affairs, praised the firefighters for their hard work.
“This is a personal battle. Chief Pellerin is family. We were fighting to save the home of one of our own tonight, and the firefighters performed admirably under difficult circumstances,” Warren said. “What matters most is that Chief Pellerin and his family were not hurt.”
While the home was seriously damaged, the aggressive work of the firefighters saved it, Warren said. It will need extensive repairs, however, and the Pellerin family will be staying with relatives for now.
Fundraising efforts from fire associations, including the Seacoast Fire Chiefs Mutual Aid District, to support Pellerin's family are expected to be announced in the coming days.
Fire crews from Kingston, East Kingston, Brentwood, Plaistow, Hampstead, Exeter, Epping, Danville, Newton, Raymond, Sandown, and Lee all responded on Sunday.
The origin and cause of the fire are under investigation.