LAWRENCEVILLE, Pa (WETM) – July 27 was a normal day for the community in Lawrenceville, Pennsylvania.
Unfortunately, that normal day turned devastating after one event changed the hearts of an entire community in Tioga County, Pa.
“As a fireman, you woke up to the fire tones going off and you never expect to have it your fire station that’s actually on fire,” said Lee Strange, the Assistant Fire Chief of Lawrenceville Station 8.
At 5:57 p.m. police and fire scanners rang for reports of a fire at Lawrenceville Fire Station 8. The Mechanic St. fire station had dark smoke filling the air and flames blazing from the roof.
“You can see smoke as you’re approaching into Lawrenceville,” Strange said. “It was very emotional for everyone.”
Fire crews from both Pennsylvania and New York responded to fight the blaze. Strange said that 27 different crews came to help and some as far as Hammondsport, N.Y.
No injuries were reported but some crew members were treated for heat exhaustion and smoke inhalation.
“Everybody was treated and released from the hospital between Corning, and Soldiers & Sailors in Wellsboro,” said Strange.
Crews managed to save two ambulances, a 1977 Dodge Power Wagon, and a 2009 Freightliner pumper.
Despite losing all other vehicles and fire gear, Station 8 has not lost their hope, fight, and their support from the community.
Lawrenceville Fire Station 8 stated they were not creating a GoFundMe Page, but community members have still given generous donations to help rebuild.
News had spread about the tragic night across the nation where residents in other states have donated to the station.
When asked about the farthest donor, Strange said: “The outpouring and brotherhood of volunteer fire departments has been overwhelming. We’ve had Louisiana, and I think there was California.”
In October, severe weather with strong winds and heavy rain hit the region causing more damage to the station. The weather forced officials to demolish part of the remaining structure.
As of November 13, 2019, the cause of the fire is still under investigation and the Lawrenceville Fire Station is waiting for insurance companies to give them a quote. Meanwhile, communities near and far, continue to give generous donations. #Station8Strong
Donations can be mailed out to the following:
Lawrenceville Fire Department
PO Box 177
Lawrenceville, PA 16929.