PHOTO BY HEATHER IMMLER | DGKN
Nine fire departments responded to the Chippewa Township fire on Memorial Day.
CHIPPEWA TWP. CHIPPEWA TWP. Anne Ramseyer said she was “numb” last week following a fire that destroyed a barn and livestock on her family’s farm May 29 along Porr Road.
She also was grateful to everyone who helped out during the “very scary situation.”
Chippewa Township Fire Department responded to the call just after noon at 10030 Porr Road on a warm and sunny Memorial Day. Area fire department personnel had just participated in their communities’ Memorial Day parades that morning and they rushed back to their stations, donned their gear and headed back out to assist.
One barn, approximately 78-by-206 feet was a total loss and the farm manager estimated between 210-240 pigs and 1,200 piglets were lost in the fire, according to Chippewa Township Fire Chief Joyce Forrer. Firefighters were on scene for five and a half hours. Eight departments provided mutual aid: East Wayne Fire District Station 1 and 2, Rittman, Orrville, Wadsworth, Sterling, Canaan, Central Fire District, and North Lawrence, Forrer said in an email. There were no civilian or firefighter injuries.
East Wayne Fire District Chief Roger Falb said five trucks responded from EWFD. He noted it was a challenging day “but everyone pitched in and did whatever was asked of them.”
Anne Ramseyer and her husband, Neil, are parents to two young girls and they own the farrowing barn and Porkberry Farm. They recently began leasing to another business.
Ramseyer said that she and her husband have been through a lot the past two years but she hasn’t lost her faith and knows that “God has a plan and walks beside us,” she said in a message to The DGKN.
Ramseyer maintained a positive attitude despite the tragedy and hardship and she was quick to express appreciation through Facebook to everyone involved. She said she was grateful the fire didn’t spread more than it did. She said she was thankful to her neighbors, friends and family and first responders who all jumped in and helped out.
“We would like to thank God for the wind to not be blowing from the west that saved our gestation barn and our mechanical room/office as well as safety for the employees and everyone working to put the fire out,” she shared with The DGKN. “Along with our neighbor, Josh Steiner, who spotted the fire first and responded quickly calling us and 911. He owns JN Steiner excavating and immediately headed to get his excavator to help keep the fire from spreading. Also the first responders were absolutely incredible!!! So kind, compassionate and professional in a very scary situation. Many of them came right from the Memorial Day parade. Also the countless people that came to see if they could help and brought food and water for us and the firefighters.
“People keep asking what they can do,” she continued.” We are kind of numb. Doesn’t feel real. At this point there’s not much we can do. We would love prayers for the mountain of work and decisions that lie ahead of us all.”