Quick action by firefighters saved Rachael Ray's Lake Luzerne home | WNYT.com

Quick action by firefighters saved Rachael Ray's Lake Luzerne home

Mark Mulholland
Updated: August 10, 2020 06:43 PM
Created: August 10, 2020 12:58 PM

LAKE LUZERNE - The images shot from above Rachael Ray's Lake Luzerne home offer some perspective of the damage. Most of it, according the county fire coordinator, was contained to the second floor of the two-story, 12-year-old home.

"The kitchen wasn't touched at all, so pretty much the whole first floor is in good shape," said Warren County Fire Coordinator Brian LaFlure.

Judging from the first images of the fire, Ray and her family were fortunate.

It was reported Sunday  at about 7:30 p.m. A neighbor alerted Ray and her family and called 911.

Because the home is on a private road in the middle of the woods, well off Route 9-N, with no hydrants nearby, the fire chief called in mutual aid from Warren and Saratoga counties right away.

Chief Ted Backus of the Luzerne-Hadley Volunteer Fire Company is glad he did.

"When we arrived we had flames through the roof," said Backus, "and I just started calling for mutual aid departments and everybody came as quickly as they could."

Ray and husband John Cusimano had been using their home as their makeshift studio during the pandemic, creating the segments seen around the country as part of the Rachael Ray Show.

DIGITAL EXTRA: News conference on Rachael Ray fire

State fire investigators were called in, not because it's considered suspicious, but because of the value of the home and its contents, said William McGovern, the NYS Office of Fire Control and Prevention's chief investigator.

"The fact that it involved a celebrity status, it doesn't change the process in how the firefighters fight the fire or how the investigation is conducted."

Ray tweeted that she lost her phone in the fire, but borrowed one to tweet her thanks to firefighters for "being kind and gracious and saving what they could of our home. Grateful that my mom, my husband, my dog… we're all okay. These are the days we all have to be grateful for what we have, not what we've lost."

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