1 minute readHome Fire

Gene Welsch’s Story: A Smoke Detector Save

Home fire survivors come in all shapes and sizes. From families like the Smiths, who were saved when 5-year-old Matthew heard a smoke detector, to Gene Welsch, a 72-year-old in South Dakota.

Welsch had new smoke detectors installed in his home this summer by the local fire department, after hearing about the Red Cross campaign in his area. In January, as Welsch was relaxing in his bedroom, his television screen went blue and the smoke detector began sounding an alarm. He escaped with his life, but nothing else.

“I don’t know how to say thank you,” Welsch said as he got emotional. “That [smoke detector] saved my life.”

#GiveWhatFireTakes is a call to help home fire survivors who have lost everything regain something — from a blanket in the immediate aftermath of a home fire, to comfort kits and lodging as the first steps to rebuilding.

Read the rest of Welsch’s story on redcross.org, and help #GiveWhatFireTakes.

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