73-year-old left without a home after Church Street fire

Local News

ROCKFORD, Ill. (WTVO) — Rockford firefighters worked to extinguish a house fire in the 1000 block of N. Church Street this morning.

The fire occurred around 11:30 a.m. The first unit on the scene reported seeing heavy fire on both the first and second floors on the south side of the home.

According to the family, five people were home at the time of the fire, but no injuries were reported. One member said that her mom owned the home for the last 25 years.

Smoke and flames left the 73-year-old woman without a home, and short of breath.

“She had inhaled a lot of smoke and she was having a hard time breathing, which she already has troubles breathing, and they gave her a treatment and everything, but now she’s sitting in my car doing better,” said Brenda Kitchens, the homeowner’s daughter.

Kitchens said that her mother’s home is now destroyed and she will need to move, but she has got plenty of options.

“She got so many offers,” Kitchens said. “She’s got a lot of grandkids and relatives here, but she got a lot of different offers. She might come to my house, she could go to my other sisters house, I’m not sure where she’ll be at.”

Several Rockford Fire Department crews were on the scene, and Fire Chief Michele Pankow said a majority of the blaze was put out not long after the call.

“There’s fire in the walls and the attic and concealed spaces, but they’re working to get that out, but the bulk of the fire has been extinguished,” Pankow said.

Kitchens said that besides her mom, her sister, niece, nephew and a baby were home at the time, and are all going okay.

The cause of the fire is still under investigation, but the loss has been estimated at $40,000, and is said to have suffered significant damage to the attic, roof, and first and second floor.

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