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Dexter home expected to be total loss from fire


DEXTER — A 17-year-old boy jumped out of a second-floor window Monday afternoon to escape a fire that destroyed the house he and his father shared on Route 180.

By the time firefighters arrived shortly after 5 p.m., the two-story house at 22973 Route 180, near Route 12F and next to Burns Nursery and Landscaping, was engulfed by flames. Dexter Fire Chief Gerald A. Kostyk said the home, built in 1870, was a total loss. State police were still investigating its cause Monday night.

The father, Gregory A. Hamilton, and his son, Christian, were taken by ambulance to Samaritan Medical Center for treatment of smoke inhalation. Their conditions were not known Monday night.

Coming from Watertown to fight the blaze, Chief Kostyk said he saw black smoke in the sky from about two miles away.

“You knew it was going to be bad,” he said, adding flames were shooting out of the second floor once he got there.

During the height of the blaze, two firefighters were forced to get off a ladder when the blaze flared up. A few minutes later, the roof on the back portion of the house collapsed.

With little they could do, six firefighters stood and watched as the fire ravaged out of control an hour after arriving. They waited until it was safe to once again fight it, firefighters said.

It also was difficult to battle because temperatures plummeted into the teens and a frigid wind kicked up. They were at the scene for more than four hours.

Mr. Hamilton’s former girlfriend, Deanna Phillips, who said she heard about the incident on her home scanner, recognized the address of the house she moved out of two months ago and arrived to find it entirely engulfed. She said Mr. Hamilton also suffered cuts on his face.

“I hope they’re going to be OK,” her 17-year-old daughter, Amber, said before hurrying to the hospital.

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