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Wednesday Blaze Renders Stag Hill Home 'Total Loss'

Fire likely started near a wood-burning stove, officials said

A two-story, wood-frame home at the top of Stag Hill Road is considered a total loss after firefighters from Mahwah and surrounding towns fought the fully involved structure fire that broke out in it Wednesday night, Police Chief James Batelli said.

According to police, a woman and her three kids were in their Mountain Road home Wednesday evening when the woman went outside to gather wood for wood-burning stove. When she returned to the house, she noticed a large fire inside, and got her three children out of the house, authorities said. Everyone was evacuated safely.

All five fire companies from Mahwah and crews from Franklin Lakes and Hillburn fought the fire for hours Wednesday.

Fighting the fire was complicated by the cold temperature and the lack of fire hydrants in the area, Batelli said. The FD used tanker trucks to supply water to the fire, officials said.

Police investigators are on scene to determine the cause of the blaze, officials said. Though Batelli said the cause the the fire is still unknown, he said a preliminary investigation by Mahwah Police Fire Investigator Michael Blondin determined the fire broke out near the wood-burning stove.

Find out how you can donate to a collection set up for the family here.

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Beth DeGroat January 04, 2013 at 05:08 PM
I spoke to Becky today and they are GRATEFUL for all of the love and support from everyone! She did mention that storage is a huge concern so if anyone has space or a storage unit, it would be greatly appriciated! Also, gift cards would be easier because of the lack of storage and currently they are in a hotel so they will have to be carring around all of the things donated! Keep up the love and support! Once again the family wants everyone to know THANKFUL AND GRATEFUL they are for everything everyone is doing to help get them back on their feet! Xoxo
Jodi January 05, 2013 at 01:54 AM
Beth I maybe able to help with the headphones. Is there an email address I can send some questions too? Becky is my daughters teacher. Thanks
Josephine Balsamo January 05, 2013 at 05:00 PM
Has anyone heard if the dog was ever found?
Carolyn Suffern January 06, 2013 at 01:58 PM
Let he who is without sin cast the first stone.
Andy Schmidt January 11, 2013 at 06:51 PM
The non-profit Saddle River Valley Cultural Center will be making a modest monetary donation. Please advise, if I should still drop off at DQ, or if they prefer different. Also, please let Roger and Becky know that the family is welcome to this Saturday's 3 PM "Magic Show" performance at the center on West Saddle River Road: http://saddlerivervalleyculturalcenter.org/SeasonShows2012-2013

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