Community responds to pre-Thanksgiving house fire on Ann Street

by Melanie Jongsma

LANSING, Ill. (November 26, 2019) – Around 1:15pm on Tuesday, November 26, Clem Lessner noticed a house fire in progress a couple of blocks from his home. He grabbed his camera and followed the smoke to the scene.

“I took about 40 photos in the next hour or so,” Lessner said, and he emailed a few examples to The Lansing Journal.

Firefighters told Lessner the flames had been extinguished before he arrived, but there were still hot spots inside producing heavy smoke that was pouring from the structure.

Firefighters create an opening in the wall in order to get water into the basement. (Photo: C. Lessner)
Smoke pours from an opening firefighters created in the basement wall. (Photo: C. Lessner)
Lansing Fire Chief Chad Kooyenga and firefighters from various neighboring communities survey the hole they created in order to get water to the basement. (Photo: C. Lessner)

Lansing was joined by Munster, Dolton, Glenwood, and South Holland in fighting the blaze and helping the victims. Lessner counted at least five fire trucks, three ambulances, two “command unit” SUVs, and six or more police and fire cars.

A Munster firefighter surveys the scene. (Photo: C. Lessner)
Vehicles and personnel from Lansing, Munster, Dolton, Glenwood, and South Holland worked together to control the blaze. “There was no way to get all of the fire equipment in one shot,” said Lessner. “This shows about half of the units on the scene by the time I left.” (Photo: C. Lessner)

The Lansing community responded to the need by sharing photos of the destruction on social media and asking for donations to help the four adults and two children whose home had been devastated.
Troost Coffee and Tea (18155 Roy Street) responded immediately by offering to serve as a drop-off location for donations.

Information about clothing sizes and other drop-off locations can be requested by emailing williamsfamilyfirefund@gmail.com.

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