Fire destroys home in Laurium

An early-morning house fire has left a Laurium family homeless and all their possessions destroyed.

Vicki and Jeff Waatti were asleep on the second floor of the home they rented on Iroquois Street when the fire awakened them.

Jeff went downstairs to investigate, but was prevented from returning upstairs as flames engulfed the staircase. He escaped through the main level. Vicki was trapped upstairs. She managed to break out a window and crawl onto the porch roof – where she held on to a window until she was rescued by firefighters.

Vicki was hospitalized with severe smoke inhalation. Jeff suffered minor smoke inhalation.

The home is described as a total loss and all the contents were destroyed. The American Red Cross has arranged temporary housing for the Waattis. A fund to help them has been established at River Valley Bank in their names.

If you’d like to contribute clothing or household goods, you can call Vicki’s sister… Tami Hiltunen… at (906) 231-4794. The cause of the fire has not yet been determined.