Displaced Cohoes residents express hope after fires

COHOES, N.Y. (NEWS10) – The Capital Region is pulling together to help those displaced by Thursday night’s fire in Cohoes.

The Red Cross says they’re now helping 26 people displaced by the fire that happened on Remsen Street.

Those impacted spanning far and wide due to those winds that blew embers throughout the neighborhood.

“I just stood and watched everything that I own be destroyed in a matter of a few hours,” said Michael Ferris, who was displaced by the fire.

Michael Ferris couldn’t believe his eyes.

The place he had just moved into a week and a half before with his girlfriend was up in flames.

“We had just now that the powers on, unpacked, put everything away, scrubbed it down,” Ferris said.

But all of that was lost with their home.

“Everything that me and my girlfriend have worked so hard for our whole lives to get and accumulate is gone in a matter of minutes that took years to build up,” Ferris said.

The last few days have been difficult, but they and others displaced by the fire are getting by with the help of family, friends and even strangers.

“It makes it a lot easier,” Ferris said.

The Cohoes Community Center is collecting necessities and the Red Cross is helping with shelter.

Patrick Kelsey of the Eastern New York Chapter says people are still coming forward in need of assistance.

“What happens you know a day or two after the fact is it gets a little crowded…and folks start looking for other accommodations,” Kelsey said.

With 31 buildings impacted, it’ll take time to get everyone situated.

“I think it will take at least a week to get everybody sorted out, to get everybody through our casework process,” Kelsey said.

With a little help, Ferris and others will move forward, but in the meantime they’re taking comfort in what they still have.

“Everybody’s safe and happy as can be with circumstances given and healthy, that’s honestly all that matters,” Ferris said.

If you would like to assist in the relief effort in Cohoes contact the Red Cross.

People in need of help from the Red Cross can contact the Emergency Communications Center at 1-800-831-0927.

The Cohoes Community Center is collecting items for those displaced by the fire. At this time they’re in need of toiletries, cleaning products, non-perishable foods and new or gently-used adult winter coats. They do not need any clothing right now.

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