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July 17th, 2006

How I spent my birthday weekend:

Friday was not only my birthday, it was also the anniversary of my becoming a firefighter. It was only appropriate, then, that the weekend by marked by a truly unusual rash of calls. The Albion fire department averages just under one run per day, and in two days we had, let's see ... 3 structure fires, a tree fire from power lines down, a carbon monoxide alarm, and I believe one or two first responder runs.

Now, let me point out two things: First, I missed some of the Friday calls, because we were down at the movies in Fort Wayne during the storm (Superman Returns -- not as good as the first two Chris Reeve movies, but worth the price of the popcorn). Second, the fact that I made the first truck on both the Saturday fires is pretty unusual. I was one of the few who happened to still be up when the barn fire came in, and Jillian and I were actually parked at the fire station to drop off a camera when the garage fire was paged. Maybe it could be looked at as a birthday gift, being able to stretch the first lines on two fires. Or, considering the humidity, maybe not. :-)

(Warning! Three long articles and 3 pictures!)

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no full moon -- I checked

All together now: "Duuuhhhhh ...."

Charges are likely pending against a local man who allegedly burned up a car, then wrecked a pickup truck while fleeing the fire early Sunday.
A car fire was the original call that brought Orange Township firefighters to 2545 E 600 N at about 4 a.m., and they arrived to find a vehicle engulfed in flames. However, police were advised not long after the first call that the unidentified male who was behind the wheels of that car had taken off, heading west at a high rate of speed.
After questioning witnesses and piecing together the story, police believe the suspect, for an unknown reason, deliberately drove the car into a bonfire, resulting in the vehicle's destruction, then drove a 2000 Dodge pickup truck into a tree while trying to get away. He was last seen speeding away in a third vehicle, after heavily damaging the front of the pickup.
The suspect, reportedly a 19 year old male who lives in the area, could face charges including Criminal Mischief and Leaving the Scene of an Accident. Meanwhile, two juveniles who stayed behind were charged with Minor Consuming Alcohol, according to the Noble County Sheriff's Department.

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