MADAWASKA - A late morning fire on Tuesday, at 114 5th Avenue in downtown Madawaska, has left Florence Roy, a lifelong resident of Madawaska, homeless for the time being.
Roy, who spoke while standing on the sidewalk across the street from her home, said there was no indication from outside the building that anything was wrong when came home from running errands at approximately 9 a.m.
After entering her home, Roy said she saw a "big cloud of smoke in front of the bedroom door." When she opened the door to check, Roy said flames had already taken over half of the room.
Roy said she then went across the street to ask a neighbor to call for help, as she said she was too nervous to do it herself.
Along with three trucks and 22 personnel from the Madawaska fire department, units from Grand Isle's fire department also responded with firefighters, according to Norman Cyr, chief at the Madawaska department. Also on scene were the local police department and ambulance units.
The small neighborhood street is located adjacent to Rite Aid, and the fire department had cordoned off access during their response. Bystanders had gathered nearby, several of who were talking with Roy.
Roy said that she currently lives alone in the house, and no pets or visitors in the home at the time of the fire.
It was 33 years ago that Roy had gone through a similar experience, with a house just two places down the street. That home was also lost to fire at that time.
Cyr said that firefighters initially left the scene at about 10:20 a.m., but went back later in the afternoon to check on the site. No other homes or structures were damaged, he added.
Cyr, and assistant chief Peter Parent said that due to fire and water damage, the structure is most likely a total loss. Firefighters had to cut away part of the roof to gain access.
The cause of the fire is thought to have been a faulty television set that caught fire in Roy's bedroom, according to Cyr and Parent.