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Fire Destroys Local Woman's Home

Vickie Ickes had lived in the house for more than 45 years.
ALTOONA - It was an emotional day for the Ickes family. Vickie Ickes has lived in her home along Maple Avenue in Altoona for more than 45 years. That house caught fire Sunday and while she's not sure what will happen next, she is thankful everyone is ok.
 
The Ickes family spent Monday picking up what was left of this home after fire ripped through it less than 24 hours earlier.
 
For Vickie, it's a step she wasn't quite ready for.
 
“I don't even want to be here. I can't handle it yet. I can't process it,” Vickie Ickes says.
 
Vickie has lived in this home for more than 45 years.
 
She lived with her granddaughter and great grandson.
 
“I had just laid the baby down for his nap in the crib upstairs and I heard this real loud bang,” Ickes says.
 
A space heater had sparked a fire, and caused an oxygen tank to explode.
 
Vicki tried to get upstairs but the smoke was too thick and her infant great grandson was trapped.
 
Fortunately her granddaughter's friend was there.
 
“He went right through the smoke, the fire, the fire was right over the top of the crib. Got the baby and brought and saved the baby,” Ickes says.
 
Both suffered minor injuries and are ok.
 
As Vicki looked over what was left of her longtime home, she's thankful for the work of firefighters, police and everyone in the community that has come forward to help.
 
“You don't find out how many nice people there are until you have something bad like this happen to you,” Ickes says.
 
Ickes did not have insurance on the house, and the family is seeking any help they can get.  They set up a fund in her name at M&T Bank. You can go to any M&T Bank branch to donate money. Just mention it is for the Vickie Ickes Fund.

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