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Montgomery volunteers head to Texas to assist in lifesaving efforts

  • Published in Local

MP1 5377The Montgomery County Swift Water rescue group readies to leave for Texas.                PHOTO BY MARK POETKER  Montgomery County Fire and Rescue Service personnel from Montgomery County are in Texas this week as part of Maryland Task Force 1 to assist with emergency response to Hurricane Harvey.

Maryland Task Force 1, composed of MCFRS personnel, is one of 28 Federal Emergency Management Agency groups around the country that FEMA organizes, manages and can choose to activate, said MCFRS spokesperson Pete Piringer.

“All 28 teams are engaged, most of which are actually involved with swift water rescues,” said Piringer. “This is the first time since 9/11, I believe, that all are engaged at the same time.”

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Anniversary vigil honors victims of fatal fire

  • Published in Local

SILVER SPRING — Flower Branch tenant Felicia Prospere said she can still remember the cries and screams from the fire and explosion that killed seven at the Silver Spring apartment complex last August.

“As soon as I opened – my husband opened the door – I just saw flames – big flames, people crying and screaming, people, you know, letting kids out of the windows, out of the balcony, people just crying for help,” Prospere said. “I couldn’t help them, all I could do was run to save my own life.”

On Aug. 10, the first anniversary of the fire at the Flower Branch Apartments complex located on Arliss Street in Silver Spring, tenants and community members gathered for a candlelight vigil to remember the sudden death and destruction from one year ago. Faith leaders, tenants, activists and politicians were present to remember the tenants that died in the fire: Fernando Jose Hernandez Orellana, 3, Deibi “David” Samir Lainez Morales, 8, Aseged Mekonen, 34, Saeda Ibrahim Deibi Samir, 41, Maria Auxiliadorai Castellon-Martinez, 53, Augusto Jimenez Sr., 62 and Saul Paniagua, 65.

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