Wednesday, October 18, 2017 Elyria 47°


Fire burns family out of their Grafton home


GRAFTON - When Teri Riemer went to her daughter`s school Friday to drop off a forgotten lunch, she didn`t want to believe what Midview North Elementary Principal Audrey Fountain told her.

Grafton firefighters try to extinguish a fire at the Riemer home on Chamberlain Road in Grafton.

"(Fountain) told me that she heard over the police scanner that my house was on fire," Riemer said. "I ran to my car and flew home. I was hoping she got the address wrong."

Riemer turned onto her street and saw it was true - fire trucks and water tankers had lined her Chamberlain Road driveway, and smoke and flames were pouring from the roof of her home.

By the time fire crews from Grafton, Litchfield, Eaton and LaGrange had responded shortly after 10 a.m., the blaze had already torn through the second-story bedrooms.

Fortunately, nobody was home, but what was left untouched by fire had been ravaged by smoke and water.

"I`m in shock," Riemer said. "When I get in there and see what`s lost, that`ll be the hard part. I can replace the clothes and jewelry and sheets, but I can`t replace the photos - we had so many photos."

Riemer wiped tears from her eyes as seared pieces of her family`s home peeled off with the water from the fire hoses.

She and her husband, Jeff, had designed the two-story home and moved in with their three young children on Christmas Eve just five years ago.

The fire is believed to have started near a woodpile stacked against the rear of the home, Grafton Township Assistant fire Chief Tim Adams said. Arson is not suspected.

Riemer said the family has insurance and local family members that the family can stay with.

"I`m just glad nobody was in there," she said. "I`m glad my family`s safe."

Contact Stephen Szucs at 336-4016 or

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