Support for Watervliet fire victims

WATERVLIET — Firefighters battled a ferocious fire at a house at the corner of 25th Street and 4th Avenue in Watervliet Sunday evening. The call came in at about 5:45 p.m.

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Luckily, everyone survived.

Mark Coonradt got his 4-year-old twins out of a front window. Those windows are now boarded up. The house is destroyed. The family lost everything.

“My brother actually went back in and got the dog and the lizard, after he got the babies out of the window with the neighbor, so to me that’s the most important part that everybody is out safe,” said Mark’s sister, Samantha Pellegrino.

Dog Brooklyn was also rescued.

This was a difficult fire to fight, said the fire chief, and they’re still looking into a cause.

The girls’ mother, Brittany, was not home.

Mark’s sister, Samantha Pellegrino of Troy, was visiting the twins at Albany Medical Center Monday.

She said they’re doing well.

“They’re okay, they’re safe. That’s what’s important,” she said. “My brother did a really good thing there getting those babies out of the house and I’m extremely grateful that he was able to get everybody out safe.”

Mark was taken to a hospital in Syracuse.

“He is a coach at the Watervliet Little League. The girls, this is their first year of T-ball, so my brother is coaching that team this year,” said Samantha.

The family is grateful to people who have reached out to help Mark, Brittany, and their children get back on their feet.

“It’s really important right now is for them to be able to get a roof over their head again and have somewhere safe to sleep at night.”

There are two fundraisers going right now– one started by Brittany’s sister, and one started by Mark’s sister.

Mark’s father says that Uncle Sam Lanes in Troy is a drop-off point for some donations because Mark is a part of the bowling community.