Fire destroys local family’s home

SALT POINT — A fire tore through a home on Route 82 in Salt Point on Thursday night, May 28. The Millbrook fire department responded at 8:43 p.m. after a call was received stating that the rear of the structure was ablaze. It was initially reported that all occupants were out of the building, but resident Lisa Conger reportedly went back into the house several times attempting to rescue the family’s dogs, two of which perished in the fire. She was hospitalized with smoke inhalation and burns to her face.

Fire Chief Ted Bownas reported that the fire was well advanced upon his crew’s arrival and firefighters were hampered in their attempts to extinguish the flames due to a lack of water supply in the immediate area. 

A second call went out and other area fire departments responded, with an engine from Union Vale covering the Millbrook station. Two tankers positioned on Hibernia Road and Jameson Hill Road aided with supplying more water.

The fire was under control by 11 p.m. and emergency personnel and firefighting equipment were out of the area by 1:30 a.m., according to Chief Bownas. Support came from Amenia, East Clinton, Dover, Pleasant Valley, Stanfordville and LaGrange; also assisting at the fire were Northern Dutchess Paramedics (NDP) and the Dutchess County Fire Investigation Division.

The Conger family, including Charlie, his wife, Lisa, and their daughter, Hailey, had lived in their home since it was built, moving in on Feb. 14, 2004. Aside from losing two of their beloved dogs, Haddie and Mac, they also lost all of their worldly possessions, escaping with only the clothes they wore on their backs.

Neighbors and friends, in fact the entire community, have responded quickly to help this family in need. People have been donating clothes for them to wear, offering to help take care of their remaining dogs, and friends are providing them a place to stay. A gofundme page, managed by Allison Ret, has been set up; as of 9 p.m. on Sunday, May 31, $42,275 had been raised, far exceeding the initial goal of $25,000. The fundraising page can be found on mostlymillbrook/facebook. Donations have ranged in amounts from anywhere between $25 to several hundred dollars.

The cause of the fire has not yet been determined. The Congers clearly face a long period of sorrow and adjustment, but also of hope in knowing the Millbrook community will be behind them 100% on their road to recovery.

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