Seven Maple Grove residents were honored with a commendation award Monday night for their “decisive and courageous actions” at a house fire July 30.
Jacob, Marissa and Benjamin Olson, Colleen Rorvick, Lee and Steven Salz and Steve Morris each received a commendation award, presented by Maple Grove Fire Chief Scott Anderson, at the Maple Grove City Council meeting Sept. 4.
“The immediate and courageous response to this fire from all of these individuals in this time of emergency lead to the conservation of personal property at the Michael and Robin Reichert residence,” according to a memo presented to the council by the Anderson. “Without their actions, the fire would have extended through the entire house and garage.”
The Maple Grove Fire Department “recognizes and appreciates the outstanding service” by the residents to the community, the memo continued.
Here is a detailed series of events surrounding the July 30 house fire, as presented to the council, leading up to the commendation of the six community members.
Jacob Olson was playing in his backyard and noticed smoke coming from the house behind his. This was the Michael and Robin Reichert residence at 9775 Troy Lane.
Jacob immediately went inside his home and told his mom and dad about the smoke coming from the house and told them he thought it was on fire.
Marissa Olson, Jacob’s mother, immediately called 911. Since she didn’t know the address of the house, she walked over to the house with her two children and gave dispatch the correct address and waited for the fire department to arrive.
As Marissa called 911, Benjamin Olson ran across the lawn to the residence and witnessed the lower bedroom window breakout. He went to the front to determine if anyone was home, When he found no one was home, he returned to the rear of the house and helped two other individuals spray water on the fire.
Steve Salz alerted his father, Lee Salz, to a smoke coming from the home across the street. Lee immediately called 911 to report the fire and then ran to the rear of the home. When he arrived at the back of the residence, he way a city of Maple Grove employee spraying water to the exterior of the home to control the spread of the fire. Lee and another neighbor took a second hose and assisted in these efforts until the fire department arrived.
Colleen Rorvick noticed dark smoke by the window of the home next to her (the Reichert residence). She evacuated her home with her two grandchildren and called 911 to report the neighbor’s house on fire. Colleen shared information with the fire department that no one was home and no pets were inside and contacted the homeowners, who were both at work, to tell them about the fire.
Steve Morris was working in the area as a utility employee for the city of Maple Grove when he noticed the smoke and investigated the sources. After discovering an active fire in the basement of the home, he used a garden hose to slow the spread of the fire and took into consideration his safety and the safety of others helping. Morris is a 24-year retired veteran of the Maple Grove Fire Department and city resident.
“The Maple Grove Fire Department thanks these individuals for their service and compassion to their fellow citizens of Maple Grove. They are a credit to the city and we are grateful for their extraordinary actions,” Anderson stated in the memo.
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