‘We’re just all happy we’re all out and safe’
Published 3:30 pm Friday, February 12, 2016
An Albert Lea man was in his bedroom Friday morning when he heard something fall in the garage. A short time later, multiple fire departments were on scene, battling a large fire.
Smoke billowed out of the house at 2201 Gene Ave. when the Albert Lea Fire Department arrived shortly after 8 a.m.
Ty Nielsen said after he heard something fall in the garage, he saw smoke and then called 911 and his father, Lowell, who was working near the house at Great Lakes Polymer.
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Lowell Nielsen then called his wife, Darcy, who was at work at Produce State Bank.
“Pretty quick thinking on Ty’s part,” Lowell Nielsen said.
Albert Lea and Glenville firefighters battled the blaze that started in an attached garage, said Albert Lea Deputy Fire Chief Jeffery Laskowske. In addition to substantial damage in the garage, the main floor of the house sustained heavy smoke and heat damage.
The cause of the fire has not yet been released.
Darcy Nielsen said she was devastated and shocked, yet thankful her family, including her second son, Zach Rice, and her dog, Emma, were all safe after the fire.
Late Friday morning, the Nielsens were at neighbors Connie and Bob Probst’s house across the street.
“We’re just all happy we’re all out and safe,” Darcy Nielsen said.
The Nielsens expressed appreciation of their neighbors.
“It means the world to have wonderful neighbors,” Darcy Nielsen said.
Although the family is in a tough situation, they were optimistic of what the future will bring.
“It will all work out in the end,” Lowell Nielsen said.
The family had been living at the house since December 2012.
Darcy Nielsen said she is using her faith to get through the tragedy and expressed optimism that they will be able to return to the house.
“God gives us what we can handle,” she said.
The Albert Lea Salvation Army assisted the family on scene, and the American Red Cross assisted the family with housing after the fire, the family said.