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Posted on Thu, Sep 17, 2009 : 2:16 p.m.

Three displaced by Garden Homes Court fire, two pets missing

By Lee Higgins

Anthony Bowers is relieved none of his family members were injured in a fire that destroyed his Garden Homes Court house this afternoon.

But Bowers has not been able to find his parakeet Kite or cat Man Man who were inside when the blaze broke out in the kitchen about 1:05 p.m.

Fire officials are investigating the cause of the fire at the three-bedroom wood-frame home near Fulmer Street on the city's northwest side. Bowers, 20, lost clothing, family photographs and other items.

"I don't have much clothes to begin with, so if any of that is damaged, it's like starting back from scratch," he said.

He was in his bedroom watching television and heard a popping noise and thud, but thought nothing of it.

Minutes later, the smoke detector outside his bedroom door went off, he said. He walked into the hallway, and saw flames on the ceiling of the kitchen, which is about 30 feet away.

Bowers yelled for his 23-year-old sister, Denise, but there was no response. He pushed out the screen door in the back of the home, hurried to the front and where he found his 64-year-old cousin Roslyn Hatchett, who owns the home. Bowers led her away from it.

He went back inside to his bedroom to get his cell phone to call 911, pushed out the window screen and attempted to push out his parakeet, who was perched above the window.

"I tried to fan him out the window, but he flew back towards his cage because he was scared," Bowers said.

Bowers then climbed out the window. He said he doesn't know when his sister left the house, but he had seen her 20 minutes earlier.

Bowers lives there with his cousin and 52-year-old father, Walter, who was at work.

At least 21 firefighters from the city and Ann Arbor Township responded and had the fire under control in about 30 minutes, said Ann Arbor Battalion Chief Chuck Hubbard.

Hubbard did not have a damage estimate.


Ann Arbor Animal Hospital

Tue, Sep 22, 2009 : 2:24 p.m.

Hello, My name is David Caddell and I am the director at Ann Arbor Animal Hospital (AAAH). One of our team members, who is a neighbor of the unfortunate family that experienced the house-fire, mentioned your article and asked if I could send you a quick note to let you know of some good news! At the time the article was written both of the owners pets were missing. Fortunately, approximately two hours after the fire had occurred, the cat, Man-Man, was located and brought to the AAAH where he received a clean bill of health although possessing the faint odor of smoke from his ordeal. Since then, Man-Man has been enjoying fine food and lodging accompanied with plenty of love, hugs, and scratches all at no charge to his owners. Man-Man does, however, miss his family and, therefore, will be happy to bid AAAH a fond adieu as soon as he can be reunited with his two-legged family members. Our hearts go out to Man-Mans family as they deal with this unfortunate and extremely challenging situation. We count ourselves lucky to be in a position to help this family when they needed it most. Regards and best, David