April 29, 2013

Benton man, 82, loses home, dogs to fire

By Amy Calder acalder@centralmaine.com
Staff Writer

BENTON — Clyde Berry, 82, lost his Benton Avenue home and everything he owned in a fire early Monday, and he has no insurance.

click image to enlarge

Home owner Clyde Berry, left, speaks with state Fire Marshall's Office investigator Ken MacMaster outside the ruins of his home in Benton that was destroyed by fire early Monday.

Staff photo by David Leaming

click image to enlarge

Lydia Kinney, left, and Veronica Rossignol, both related to homeowner Clyde Berry, salvage family photographs from the remains of Berry's home that was destroyed by fire early Monday.

Staff photo by David Leaming

Berry, a widower who worked 27 years for the town of Fairfield plowing snow and fixing roads, sat on the bumper of a pickup truck in his driveway later Monday, surveying the damage and recalling the fire.

“I was sitting in the living room watching TV and I got up and went to the bathroom on the back end of the house,” he said. “I was in the bathroom a couple of minutes and I came out and the outside porch was all in flames, coming right from the ground, right up to the roof. I don’t even remember how I got out.”

He reported the fire at 1:26 a.m. by driving to the fire department because he had no cellphone.

Fairfield Fire Chief Duane Bickford and Ken MacMaster, an investigator with the state Fire Marshal’s Office, sifted through the rubble Monday morning, looking for a cause.

Berry lost two dogs in the fire and a cat is unaccounted for, according to his daughter-in-law, Barbara Berry, 29.

Amy Calder — 861-9247


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