HICKSVILLE — A late Thursday afternoon fire here claimed a village residence and resulted in the deaths of two dogs.

At approximately 4:30 p.m., firefighters from Hicksville arrived on the scene at 323 Antwerp Road. They observed smoke coming from the residence and began to call for back up.

“We could have handled the fire on our own,” said Assistant Fire Chief Bruce Hart, “but on a day as hot as today, I knew extra hands would make the job easier.”

Sherwood, Edgerton and Antwerp were dispatched for mutual aid. According to Hart, there is a mutual aid agreement between the three departments. “Anytime there is a call, we make sure we are ready to help one another.”

The owners of the home, Josh and Stephanie Traxler arrived on the scene after firefighters had begun battling the fire.

Stephanie Traxler was on her way home from Fort Wayne when she said she got a phone call from the Hicksville Fire Department. “It’s not the kind of phone call you want to get. They said my house was on fire.”

She told them no one was at home at the time, but that her three dogs were inside. Two of the dogs perished in the fire while the third was taken to a local veterinarian for heat exhaustion.

After inspection, Hart commented that, “it appears the fire started in the kitchen and spread through the house. Most of the damage is smoke and water, with some fire damage to the interior — mostly in the kitchen.”

Hart also commented that the house at this time is uninhabitable, adding, “What we are looking at is a total loss. With the price of lumber today, it is easily $100,000 or more in damages.”

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