Two upstate New York firefighters remain hospitalized in guarded condition Tuesday, a day after being shot in a hail of bullets that killed two other firefighters responding to a house fire that investigators say appears to have been set as a trap.
Firefighters Joseph Hofstetter and Theodore Scardino are recovering at a hospital in Rochester, New York.
They were among four firefighters who responded to the blaze in the suburban Rochester town of Webster Monday morning. Authorities say William Spengler set a house and car ablaze and then opened fire when the firefighters showed up. He later exchanged bullets with a police officer before killing himself.
Spengler’s sister is missing. The 62-year-old was released from prison in 1998 after serving 17 years for killing his grandmother.
A smoldering rage may be all that remains after Gene Cranick’s home burned to the ground last week in Obion County, Tennessee.
Firefighters are usually the bold “veni, vidi, vici” sort, but those from neighboring South Fulton could only say “veni, vidi.” They came. They watched. That’s it.
Cranick lives outside of the city limits and he admits that he forgot to pay a $75 annual service fee that would have provided him with fire protection. Firefighters wouldn’t lift a finger, much less the hoses that might have saved the house.
The fire reportedly started in some barrels outside. As the flames crept closer to the home, Cranick says he offered to pay whatever it would take. The plea fell on deaf ears. Hours later, the home was gone.
So were three dogs and a cat.
“They coulda’ been saved if they put water on it. But they didn’t do it,” Cranick told MSNBC.
The South Fulton firefighters did show up and managed to save a neighbor’s field. The neighbor had paid the fee. But they would provide no heroics for the Cranicks. A local news report shows them climbing back on their trucks, flames still dancing over what was once the family’s home. Continue reading…