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Benefit set for Bakers Mills family that lost home to fire

J&J Foxx Lair offers space for Nov. 11 event

This is what’s left of Bruce and Amy Cleveland’s house in Bakers Mills.

This is what’s left of Bruce and Amy Cleveland’s house in Bakers Mills. Photo by Phillip Sherotov.

— It’s fitting that the J&J Foxx Lair Tavern hold a fundraiser for Bruce and Amy Cleveland, who lost their home to a fire Saturday, Oct. 27. J&J’s bar manager, Joelene Slater, was the one who found the fire and called 911.

Slater had just closed the tavern at 1:30 in the morning and was driving down the road when two deer ran in front of her vehicle near the church. She slowed down and watched them.

“I say God sent these two deer out to tell me to look to my left, and watched them go across the road, and when I did I see this glow on Edwards Hill,” Slater said. “So I drove up there, and their car was parked out front but there was no one around, so I called 911.”

Warren County Emergency Services received the call at 1:37 a.m., according to Warren County EMS Director/Fire Coordinator Brian LaFlure. Slater was at the Cleveland’s 95 Edwards Hill Road home in Bakers Mills doing what she could to help the Cleveland’s before firefighters arrived.

“Then I tried to scream, blew my horn, my God, it was awful,” Slater said. “I tried to wake them up, not knowing if they were home or not. You don’t know if somebody’s home or not. So then I found out later that they were OK, and I was so glad.”

Bruce had apparently taken Amy to the Glens Falls Hospital for an emergency about an hour before the fire, so they were not home. But there was severe damage to the house.

“They lost everything,” Slater said. “It was a total loss on the house. It even singed the paint and melted the lights on his truck that was parked out front. That’s how hot it was.”

All fire companies in the town of Johnsburg responded to the fire, as did Johnsburg EMS, according to LaFlure. The Chestertown and Potterville fire departments were standing by.

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