Glasmyer said he was in his bedroom when at about 8:30 a.m. he heard a smoke detector going off in another room. When he went to check on it, he was greeted by fiery chaos.
“The curtains were on fire,” he said. “There was a lounge chair burning”
Glasmyer said he used clothing to beat out the fire, as well as trying to snuff it with water. He quickly realized it was of no use, so he called 911.
That didn’t go well at first, either.
“I couldn’t get through,” he said. “I called two or three times. I kept getting this message: ‘Thank you for using this service’”
Glasmyer said he fled out the rear door and headed to a neighbor’s home, where he successfully dialed 911.
Firefighters arrived and extinguished the blaze in about 20 minutes, Marblehead fire Chief Doug Waugh said.
The windows closest to the fire shattered from the intense heat. And while the cause remains unknown, it appears to have started near an electrical heater.
Later in the day, Glasmyer was back in the home assessing the damage, a winter breeze blowing in through the shattered windows. Furniture was charred to nothing and smoke stains blackened much of the ceiling.
Glasmyer’s neighbor stopped by to offer support.
“You can stay with me, you know,” the man told him. “The important thing is that you’re all right”
The fire comes just weeks after a Marblehead house fire that killed 77-year-old George Dehil.
Much can be learned from the fire at Glasmyer’s home, Waugh said.
“(This) proves that smoke detectors work,” Waugh said. “People should be careful using space heaters, (and) they should make sure their smoke detector batteries are frequently replaced”