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Lissa andSandraWhen my dear friend Sandra Wills Hannon and I met for lunch the other day in Maryland, we had a lot of catching up to do. We hadn’t seen each other in 11 years, largely because I’d relocated to another part of the country. I knew we’d cover the topics of marriage, career, and aging parents, but I had no idea that a major fire would be part of the conversation.

Sandra told me that in 2007, her lovely three-bedroom home in Fort Washington, Maryland, with the two-tier foyer that I always admired, caught on fire. She was cooking dinner when she noticed smoke coming from the laundry room. On further inspection she realized the smoke’s origin was the two-car garage. Incredibly, one of the cars was revving, although no one was in it. Sandra slammed the door leading to the garage shut, and following the family home escape plan, yelled for her two daughters who were home at the time—including Madison, pictured below with her parents—to get out, grabbed the cell phone and left. Husband, Kevin, and another daughter were at work.

Hannon FireSandra called 9-1-1 from across the street once she joined the girls at the designated meeting place. The garage burned down and the two cars inside were destroyed. The patio and the master bedroom were consumed. The fire would have been more damaging if not for the home fire sprinkler system. The rest of the home remained intact.

Sandra said after firefighters knocked down the blaze, they complimented her because they were able to enter the house through the patio doors. They said people often block those doors with stored items, which leaves the fire department no choice but to break the doors down and delays entry to the home.

The Hannons were out of their house for eight months while the rebuilding was taking place. If they’re unlucky enough to have another one of their cars experience wiring problems, they’ll be ready. During the reconstruction, they had a sprinkler system added to the garage.

I was proud that my dear friend knew exactly what to do in a fire emergency and riveted as she told her story. It made our reunion lunch all the more special.

 

!http://nfpa.typepad.com/.a/6a00d8351b9f3453ef01b7c7ac5538970b-320wi|src=http://nfpa.typepad.com/.a/6a00d8351b9f3453ef01b7c7ac5538970b-320wi|alt=Lincoln Presentation 4 (2)|style=margin: 0px 5px 5px 0px;|title=Lincoln Presentation 4 (2)|class=asset asset-image at-xid-6a00d8351b9f3453ef01b7c7ac5538970b img-responsive!The summer 2015 issue of a Lincoln, Nebraska, magazine features a team that   recently presented NFPA’s Remembering When™ program to the older adult community. Living Well magazine covers topics of importance to the older adult population, their families, and community organizations.


 

The article focused on an event called “Thrive” held at the new Innovation Park, where Lincoln firefighter and paramedic Phil Lewiston, and Public Education Coordinator and Aging Partners Health and Fitness Coordinator Peggy Apthorpe provided fire and fall prevention tips. Nebraska State Fire Marshal Public Information !http://nfpa.typepad.com/.a/6a00d8351b9f3453ef01b7c7ac5549970b-120wi|src=http://nfpa.typepad.com/.a/6a00d8351b9f3453ef01b7c7ac5549970b-120wi|alt=Lw-thumb (2)|style=margin: 0px 0px 5px 5px;|title=Lw-thumb (2)|class=asset asset-image at-xid-6a00d8351b9f3453ef01b7c7ac5549970b img-responsive!Officer Ray Nance also helped out during the presentation.


 

This year, NFPA is selecting teams from up to 25 communities to participate in the latest Remembering When Scholarship Conference. The Conference, which includes a training workshop, will be held November 4-6 in Orlando, Florida. Participants will receive training to reach older adults with fire and fall prevention education through group presentations and home visits. Applications must be submitted by noon on Wednesday, August 12, 2015.


The team will include a fire department life safety educator and a home health visiting professional or volunteer from an agency serving older adults, such as visiting nurses, church outreach groups, civic organizations, and meal delivery programs.  New for 2015, teams may opt to add a third member who fits one of the categories and strengthens the team.


Priority will be given to teams that include an American Red Cross volunteer who actively participates in the Home Fire Preparedness Campaign. Also, scholarship winners will have an option to extend their awards an extra night to attend a special interest symposium being held on November 4th at the same venue.


The Remembering When program was developed by NFPA and the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) to help older adults live safely at home as long as possible. Together, NFPA and the CDC created 16 key safety messages – eight fire prevention and eight fall prevention.


Each award is valued at more than $4,000 and includes airfare, lodging, and meals.


 

!http://nfpa.typepad.com/.a/6a00d8351b9f3453ef01bb08506c64970d-800wi|border=0|src=http://nfpa.typepad.com/.a/6a00d8351b9f3453ef01bb08506c64970d-800wi|alt=Application Logo|title=Application Logo|class=asset asset-image at-xid-6a00d8351b9f3453ef01bb08506c64970d image-full img-responsive!


!http://i.zemanta.com/350368756_80_80.jpg|src=http://i.zemanta.com/350368756_80_80.jpg|alt=|style=margin: 0px; padding: 0px; border: 0px currentColor; width: 80px; display: block; max-width: 100%;!NFPA is now accepting applications for Remembering When Conference

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