Emplacement Place fire: Babysitter helped save four kids during blaze

A fire that consumed the second-story of a home on Encampment Place Thursday night might have been a lot worse were it not for the actions of a babysitter watching homeowners Laura and Steven Coury’s four kids.

Laura Coury said the sitter, a senior at RHS, attempted to put out the blaze that started in a closet in the room of Coury’s 11 year-old daughter.

“Jack knew where the fire extinguisher was under the sink,” Laura Coury said, referring to her husband’s 11 year-old son from his previous marriage.

When the sitter realized the fire was out of control, she picked up the kids and got out of the house to call 911.

“She acted pretty responsibly,” said Chief Jerry Myers of the Ridgefield Fire Department.

Myers said the cause of the blaze has yet to be determined. That will be a part of the town fire marshal’s investigation into the blaze.

“Obviously, we’re pretty happy that everyone’s okay,” Myers told The Press.

The Courys were out to dinner in Brewster when the call came that their house was on fire. They raced home to find everyone safely out of the house.

Laura said the fire left significant fire damage on the second floor, and that much of the first floor had smoke damage. Most of the house’s exterior was left intact, though most of the windows on the second floor had shattered.

Myers said that it took about five minutes for firefighters from Engine No. 2 to arrive after the call was placed at 8:25 p.m. Myers said the two officers immediately got to work surveying the extent of the fire, and fighting the blaze from the outside of the home.

“They were there a full seven minutes before anyone from headquarters,” Myers said. “They got a lot of work done in those seven minutes.”

Because there were only two officers on Engine No. 2, Myers explained, the firefighters could not enter the home to stop the blaze until backup arrived, in the form of two fire officers in the department’s ambulance.

“The second floor had a pretty significant fire going, visibility was zero,” Myers said.

Helping hand

Laura Coury said that neighbors up the street have agreed to take the family’s dogs until they find a place to stay.

She said the family was very grateful for all of the help they had received from neighbors.

“A lot of people have told me there’s a lot going on on Facebook,” she said. “It’s a great community.”

A neighbor, Christine Santori, said that she was collecting clothing and other donations for the Coury family.

“We are collecting gift cards at 25 Encampment or 57 Old Trolley and accepting donated clothing at 25 Encampment Place as well,” she told The Press.

The family has already received help from all corners of the community.

That was best exemplified when the Coury’s 11 year-old daughter got off the bus today. She ran to greet her dad with an arm full of donated clothing.

Her guidance counselor at Scotts Ridge Middle School had bought her a bag of new clothes to replace some of what was lost in the fire.