Neighbors & Fire Crews Help Residents Escape from Apartment Fire

Posted at 6:09 AM, Jul 31, 2013
and last updated 2013-07-31 08:07:10-04

KENT CITY, Mich. — Firefighters and fellow apartment residents helped their neighbors escape from a fire early Wednesday morning at Kent Ridge Apartments.

The Red Cross is helping up to 19 residents affected by the fire. In addition. an engaged couple, Leeanne Ritzema and Dennis Fast, are “Paying it Forward” to neighbors who lost everything. They’re collecting clothing and bedding. Here’s their contact info: (616) 258-3385 or (616) 238-4293

The first calls on the fire came in at 2:10 a.m.  When crews arrived, smoke and flames were seen at 173 Kentridge Drive.

The Kent City Fire Chief said much of the blaze was in the attic area, and flames started erupting through the roof.  They called for additional help, and more than a half-dozen other departments responded.

FOX 17 spoke to neighbors who smelled smoke, and went out to alert other residents.  One woman says she broke a neighbor’s sliding door and shouted that there was a fire.  Eventually, everyone made it out safely with the help of police officers and fire crews.

The Red Cross is helping the 18-19 residents who are impacted by the fire.  The cause is still under investigation, with the state fire marshal expected to be on the scene later on Wednesday.