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Fire guts Road 9 home; no one injured in blaze

A suspected kitchen mishap gutted an elderly man’s home on Road 9 Wednesday right around lunch time.

At around 12:30 p.m., police, the Powell Volunteer Fire Department and EMTs from Powell Hospital responded to the fire at 548 Road 9.

Forrest Martin, 83, had cooked a hamburger on the stove and thought he may have left the burner on while he ate his burger, he said.

Martin, who was not injured, spotted the fire, which had progressed quickly. He then left the home and waited for the emergency responders.

The fire was contained in the kitchen, dining area and bathroom, but the rest of the house suffered smoke damage, said Asst. Fire Chief Damian Dicks.

Several windows were broken and scorched by flames and smoke. Inside, the walls were blackened like spent firewood and Sheetrock and insulation hung from the ceiling in tatters.

Although portions of the house were gutted, it was still structurally sound, Dicks said.

“It’s certainly rebuildable,” said Fire Department Capt. Nate Mainwaring.

Martin, who watched the drama unfold from the cab of Dicks’ pickup truck, told the EMTs examining him on the scene that he was OK.

Martin moved to the home in the 1950s, he said. “This is my granddad’s homestead,” he said.

“This has been his home since I was little,” said his granddaughter, Heidi Bassett, whose husband, Brett, a Powell firemen, worked inside the house to make certain the fire was extinguished.

Heidi Bassett said she will make sure her grandfather has a home to go to now that his has been damaged by the fire.

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