The remains of 490 Midland Avenue after the fire was extinguished in the early hours of February 22.
Early Morning Midland Avenue Fire Claims One Life
Just after midnight on February 22, the City of Rye Police and Fire departments responded to the report of a fire at 490 Midland Avenue. Upon arrival, they found flames coming from the second floor of the home, whereupon they attacked inside aggressively.
Firefighters met with heavy fire upstairs where they conducted search and rescue and discovered an 85-year-old female, Cecelia Kussner, lying unconscious. They and an EMS team performed emergency medical care and transported the victim, who was still alive, to Greenwich Hospital, where she was pronounced dead.
The fire was extinguished within 45 minutes and no other injuries were reported. Firefighters from Harrison, and both the Town and Village of Mamaroneck helped tame the fire, whose cause is under investigation.
When firefighters first entered the home, they were met by a dog who quickly escaped out the front door. Later, remaining crew members searched the woods beyond the backyard for the dog. At around 3 a.m., the animal reappeared and was handed over to a Humane Society team at the site.