Family dog dies in Yonkers fire

Posted: Updated:
YONKERS -

A family pet died in a fire that heavily damaged a Yonkers home overnight.

Fire officials say the home at 10 Lewis St. was already heavily engulfed in flames when they arrived around 2 a.m. today.

The homeowners, Joe and Mary Grace Perdoch, say their smoke alarm went off, and they were able to get out safely. However, when they tried to go back in for their 9-year-old dog, the smoke and flames were just too much and the dog perished in the fire. Because of the extreme cold, it took firefighters around two hours to get the flames under control.  "Any time with these extreme temperatures it's tough, but there was a significant amount of visible fire on arrival also," says Yonkers Fire Department Deputy Chief Joseph DeLasho.

Five firefighters were injured while working the blaze. One suffered third-degree burns to his hands and was taken to the burn unit of Jacobi Medical Center in the Bronx.

Investigators think a space heater plugged into an extension chord in first-floor bathroom caused the fire. “If you use them safely, then they're OK. It's when you overload extension cords or you put the space heater near curtains or some kind of other combustibles, that's when you run into problems," says DeLasho.

The Perdochs, who have lived in the house for 30 years, say there is a lot of damage, including a partial roof collapse on the top floor. However, there is a chance the home will not have to be torn down. They tell News 12 they will be staying with relatives who live nearby for now.

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