Harrison family loses home to fire

By Lisa Williams Ackley
Staff Writer

HARRISON — A local family lost their home on Cape Monday Road and all of their belongings to a fire that was discovered by a girl who lives there when she

FAMILY LOSES HOME IN HARRISON — Jeff and Autumn Worster’s home on Cape Monday Road was destroyed by fire Friday afternoon. (Photo courtesy of Harrison Town Manager George ‘Bud’ Finch)

came home on the bus from school Friday afternoon.

Jeff and Autumn Worster are being aided and comforted by their friends and family here in “The Friendly Village”, after the blaze destroyed their 24-foot by 32-foot wood framed, two-story Gambrel-style home in its quiet, wooded setting Feb. 11. It was their middle-school aged daughter who called 9-1-1, after discovering the fire when she arrived home.

Firefighters from Harrison and five mutual aid towns — Bridgton, Naples, Norway, Sebago and Waterford — responded to the fire that was toned out shortly after 3 p.m. Friday afternoon with engines, a ladder truck, tankers and manpower.

“The house was fully involved, upon arrival of the first fire units on scene,” said Harrison Town Manager George “Bud” Finch. “There were no injuries reported. The house and contents were a total loss.”

Finch said the young girl opened the front door but did not go inside, instead closing the door and calling for help. It is believed the family’s dog perished in the fire.

The town manager thanked all of the responding fire departments, as well as “United Ambulance Service for standing by at the scene, Central Maine Power for their quick response to disconnect the electricity, the Cumberland County Sheriff’s Department and Harrison Public Works for sanding the roads in the area.”

Neighbors helping neighbors

As soon as word spread that the Worsters lost their home to a fire, a spontaneous town-wide, in fact area wide, drive was immediately underway to help them in their time of need.

“People are coming together for them,” Finch said, of the effort being made to assist the Worsters.

Donation jars for the Worster family have been set out at both The Village Tie-Up and Market Basket stores on Main Street.

A page has been set up on Facebook entitled “Worster Fire Relief” that has information about upcoming fundraisers to benefit the Worster family.

Those with items to donate to Jeff and Autumn and their family can bring them to Beth Gosselin’s house at 167 Town Farm Road in Harrison. Beth is also in the process of setting up a bank account where donations may be sent. Check the Facebook page, for more information.

So far, a fight night event has been scheduled for Feb. 26 at the Crystal Lake Wellness Spa with food and pay per view. Beth said a Karaoke night is also being planned for sometime in early March at Shawnee Peak Ski area.

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