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Powell man wakes to flames

Smoke billows as Powell volunteer firefighters work to put out a fire in a mobile home on Adams Street in Powell just before dawn on Tuesday. Smoke billows as Powell volunteer firefighters work to put out a fire in a mobile home on Adams Street in Powell just before dawn on Tuesday. Tribune photo by Toby Bonner

Mobile home damaged in Tuesday morning fire

Reynaldo “Rey” Adame woke up Tuesday morning when his dog jumped on him.

That’s not unusual; but anything ordinary about the morning vanished when Adame, of Powell, realized his mobile home was on fire.

“When I woke up, I was sitting on top of the fire,” Adame said Wednesday.

Adame had fallen asleep on the couch in the living room, the warmest room of his home, during the bitter-cold night. When his dog, Blue, woke him up at 6:55, flames were licking at the couch from underneath.

“Everything was full of smoke,” Adame said. “I pulled the couch back to see where it was burning. But I couldn’t see anything — just the fire.”

That was when he ran outside, barefoot, in the sub-zero, pre-dawn weather.

“When I opened the door, it went — whoo! — and everything popped into flames,” Adame said, blowing a gust of air with his mouth in imitation of the sound. “I closed the door, because I saw the flames coming after me.”

Windows in the mobile home began breaking, letting in additional oxygen to further fuel the inferno.

“My dog was still there, so I opened the door again, and the fire was just growing. I couldn’t find my dog,” Adame said. “The trash man was there, and he was like, ‘Get away! Get away! Get away from the house!’

“I ran to him, and asked him to call the fire department. I couldn’t call; everything of mine burned — wallet, papers, phone.”

Then Adame ran to the rear of the trailer and threw open the back door, knocking it off its hinges. His terrified dog ran to the door and jumped out to join his master, equally frightened.

Later, a neighbor gave Adame a pair of shoes to give his feet some protection from the frozen ground, and a crew from Powell Valley Hospital took him into an ambulance.

Adame’s niece, Janelly Rios, lives with her family in the neighboring mobile home to the east of Adame’s in Triangle Mobile Home Park, located between South and Adams streets near Ferris Street.

Rios and her husband, Juan, were wakened shortly after 7 a.m. by a loud banging on their front door.

“It was the police,” she said. “They yelled, ‘Wake up, wake up! You need to get out! The trailer next door is on fire!’”

They ran with their 3-year-old son to Rios’ mother’s home on the other side of the block. Her mother, Maria Adame, is Rey Adame’s sister and they all worried about whether Rey Adame had been able to escape the flaming trailer. However, they couldn’t get past the roadblock to find out if he’d been seen. They learned later that he had been taken to Powell Valley Hospital, where he was kept overnight for treatment of smoke inhalation.

Based on reports from police and Rey Adame, Powell Fire Chief Damian Dicks believes a space heater caused the fire.

“The front half of the trailer was fully involved when we got there,” Dicks said Thursday. “Fire damage was contained to the living room and kitchen, but smoke damage was throughout the whole trailer.”

Dicks said the department had three trucks and 15 firefighters working at the scene for more than an hour. He said the department did not find any smoke detectors in the home.

“Had the dog not been there, the outcome may have been worse,” Dicks said. “We cannot stress enough to have smoke detectors in the home.”

Rey Adame said he’s thankful to be alive.

“Everything else can be replaced,” he said. “The thing is, I have no place. I lost everything. But I’ve got a job, and my brother’s my boss. That’s the good thing.”

Maria Adame said she has faith that her brother will overcome this trial, as he has others in the past.

“He’s a hard worker. He works every day,” she said.

Several years ago, Rey Adame fell from about 10 feet and hit his head. He was in a coma for 10 days, and the resulting brain injury caused him to lose much of his hearing as well as his senses of smell and taste, Maria Adame said.

Blue, his dog, helps him by keeping him company, waking him up in the mornings and letting him know when someone is at the door.

Now, he can add lifesaving to the list of Blue’s accomplishments.

Hero dog needs temporary home

Do you have room in your heart, and temporarily in your home, for a canine hero?

Blue, who saved his master, Reynaldo “Rey” Adame, during a Tuesday fire now is even more homeless than his master.

The Catholic Church provided money for Adame to stay in a motel room in Powell until he gets back on his feet. But there’s no room for Blue, a 5-month-old black German shepherd. For now, he is at the City of Powell/Moyer Animal Shelter, where he can stay until Monday. After that, Blue needs another temporary home.

Adame does not want to give Blue away, but he does need someone to care for him until he has a place for both of them to live. Blue is large, friendly and energetic, and he will need daily walks or a large yard.

Adame also needs help. Everything he owned was destroyed in the fire. He is in need of clothing — along with grooming supplies, food and other necessities. He wears a size large jacket, medium in shirts and 32x30 pants. His shoe size is 9. To help, call his sister Maria Adame at 307-254-8247.


  • posted by Holly Alonzo

    January 04, 2018 4:15 pm

    Wyoming Pit Bull Post Rescue out of Worland or 3 Dog Rescue out of Cody... Could most likely help with fostering or point you in the right direction... Between the 2 they help alot of animals....

  • posted by Claudia Adame

    January 04, 2018 2:42 pm

    It breaks my heart to hear what happened to my brother, I live in Mission Texas. It is so sad to see what he is going thru at this moment. I want to thank all the community for helping him out in this time of need.

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