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Wellsville man dies after house fire on Pine Street, heroic rescue attempt by police, civilians


Story and video by JOHN ANDERSON

WELLSVILLE — A Wellsville man died this morning at Jones Memorial Hospital as the result of injuries from a fire that started around 4:30 a.m. on Pine Street.

Wellsville Police and fire investigators were not 100% sure all family members were notified of the death and the name is being withheld at this time.

A husband and wife woke to the fire in their bedroom and Wellsville Police were the first on the scene and the fire department arrives seconds later. The man, 63, attempted to jump out of the second floor window where he was caught by Wellsville Police Officer John Valentine and two other civilians.

They took the man to a neighbors house as the ambulance navigated up Pine Street and he was taken to Jones Memorial Hospital where he was pronounced deceased.

Allegany County Fire Investigator Jeff Luckey said he spoke to the wife who is recovering from injuries at Jones Memorial Hospital.

Firefighters and investigators at the scene.

Wellsville Police Chief Timothy O’Grady said Valentine was treated for an eye injury. He was back and the station and finished his shift.

“Our investigation should determine the cause, we are bringing in the state office of fire investigation because of the fatality and the injuries sustained by the other person,” said Luckey. “They will help with the cause and origin and hopefully give the family some reassurance as what happened.”

Luckey said the office of emergency management and the Wellsville Volunteer Fire Department will offer critical stress debriefing.

Assisting Wellsville at the scene were Andover Ambulance, MTS (Medical Transport Services), Allentown, Andover fire, FAST Team 4, Allegany County Fire Investigators, Scio Fire Department, Willing Fire Department, Wellsville Police, Wellsville rescue and ambulance, the Wellsville Village Department of Public Works and National Fuel.

(Video of the early morning fire scene by Brian Newark)

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