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Last glimpse of spring, by Mel Hunt

As mom rescued daughter from Wellsville fire, cat fled; village employee saves cat 12 hours later



Andrea (Newland) Hall and her 12-year-old daughter, were home at their apartment on Madison Street in Wellsville Thursday night when a fire quickly enguled the third floor above them.

Hall and her daughter, a Wellsville Middle School student, were overcome by smoke and escaped the home. Hall had her cat, Jax, in her hand on the way out but the cat fought her, scared from the fire and noise.

Hall and her daughter were taken to the hospital for smoke inhalation, fire officials said. A family member said they were treated for the smoke inhalation and released early this morning.

As the Village of Wellsville utilities department, National Fuel and the Wellsville Village Police were making sure water and gas were shut off this morning, Jax started screaming from the basement.

Dan Gardner, the underground utilities supervisor, was able to pick up the scared and combative cat and bring him outside. The cat was drenched from the water and quickly covered with a sweatshirt.

Family of the cat watched the Wellsville Sun live video and came back to the burned up house to retrieve Jax. John Anderson photo.

The Wellsville Sun was wrapping up a live broadcast from the scene ( when Gardner came out the front door assisted by the Wellsville Police Department.

The SPCA Serving Allegany County is aware of the missing cats and the rescue of Jax. The SPCA is looking into proper medical treatment for the cat as a result of the smoke and water.

The Catholic Charities Joyce Family Food Pantry and Outreach Thrift Store will be able to assist those affected by the fire with food, clothing and essentials as well as accept donations. They are at 67 East Pearl Street and you can call 585-296-3757 for more information.

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