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Donations sought for victims of house fire

MAIDEN ROCK—Donations are being taken for a family whose house was damaged by fire on Christmas.

The Nick and Amy Johnson family lost all of their belongings in the fire at their home at W3593 110th Ave., Maiden Rock. No one was home when the blaze began and there were no injuries, except to their pit boxer, which was carried out of the basement by fire fighters with smoke damage to the dog’s lungs, Nick Johnson said Tuesday.

The Nick and Amy Johnson Fire Fund has been set up at Hiawatha National Bank and the public can donate to it at any of the bank’s branches—in Glenwood City, Hager City, Hudson, Maiden Rock and Osceola.

Clothing, especially suited for winter, would be appreciated by family members. The couple has three children and Amy Johnson provided the following sizes for them: Nikki, age 11, small juniors for top, 2-3 juniors for bottom, 5 for shoes; Olivia, age nine, 12 for top, 10-12D for bottom, 1 for shoes; and Caleb, age six, 8 for top, 7 for bottom and 1 for shoes.

Donations of household goods, pots and pans, furniture and the like plus monetary donations would also be welcomed, the Johnsons agreed.

They are presently staying at his parents’ house in Maiden Rock, Nick Johnson said. He was there on Christmas and his wife was at her parents’ residence in Northern Minnesota that day. He returned to their home first, discovering smoke coming from the roof.

He called the Pierce County Sheriff’s Department dispatch around 7:30 p.m. Christmas evening and fire crews were summoned from Maiden Rock, Lund and Ellsworth, along with a paramedic from the Ellsworth Ambulance Service. While they were responding, a second call indicated flames had broken out.

The cause is believed to be electrical, Nick Johnson said. Specifically, an outlet behind an oven was said to have shorted out. The house had major interior damage, particularly to the upper half, which he described as “gutted out.”

He planned to rummage through the remains over the next couple of weeks, salvaging anything possible. He then wants to tear down the structure and use a bank loan to put up a new modular home on the same foundation and basement, which he said are okay.