Cohoes fire a total loss for family, but reunited with dog

COHOES, N.Y. (NEWS10) – Investigators are still trying to figure out what sparked an overnight fire on Hudson Avenue.

The city engineer says the home must be torn down as soon as possible.

“The neighbors came in my front door screaming for me, telling me my brother’s house was on fire. When I came out that front porch was all ablaze,” Steve Rymanowski, the homeowner’s brother, said. “So I kicked the back door in and ran into the living room to find my brother who wasn’t there.”

Steve says that he was in such a panic he didn’t realize until later on that his brother’s car wasn’t even parked out front.

Bob Rymanowski, the owner of the home, had just left to go pick up his wife Carol from the airport.

“They pulled up minutes later. A nice welcome home for her to come home and see her house on fire,” Steve said.

“We came back down Bridge Avenue and saw the firetrucks. She said, ‘Oh my God, there’s a house on fire. Gee, I hope it’s not ours.’ We came down the corner and it was ours,” Bob said. “I got out of the car and just kept saying ‘I don’t know what I’m going to do.  I don’t know what I’m going to do.’ Of course, we were thinking about the animals you know.”

Eight cats and three dogs were trapped inside. One of which his brother was able to rescue.

“As soon as I kicked the back door open, she ran out. I don’t know where she is, but she’s alive,” Steve said.  “I held the door open as long as I could to let the other dogs out, but they stood there barking and I lost them in the smoke and couldn’t stay there any longer.”

Sadly, those two dogs along with at least four other cats did not make it out alive.

There’s a silver lining to this whirlwind of a morning, Mya was reunited with her owners.

The fast-moving flames also spread to the neighboring houses on each side, one of which is in the process of being sold to new owners.

In the meantime, the two families displaced will be staying with relatives and are being helped by the Red Cross.

“Now it’s just one step at a time. We’ll be staying at my brother’s for a couple of days anyway and see where it goes from there,” Bob said.

For the full developments of the story view the accompanying videos below:

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