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Home » Valentine's Day » UPDATE: Teen dies from injuries sustained in Shortsville fire, first responder community mourning

UPDATE: Teen dies from injuries sustained in Shortsville fire, first responder community mourning

Officials say the cause of the fire in the village of Shortsville remains under investigation, but the 15-year-old who was rescued by first responders on-scene has died from his injuries.

William Strubinger, 15, of Shortsville was being treated at Strong Memorial Hospital for his injuries.

His father is a volunteer firefighter with the Manchester Fire Department- and grandfather a volunteer firefighter with the Shortsville Fire Department.

“Please keep your thoughts and prayers with the family and the members of the Shortsville and Manchester fire departments during this difficult time,” Ontario County EMO Director Jeffrey Harloff said in a statement.

Finger Lakes Partners (Billboard)


First responders credited with working through difficult situation, resuscitating teen in Shortsville fire

– Thursday, 8 p.m.

Ontario County Emergency Management Office Director Jeffrey Harloff provided an update on the fire that resulted in a 15-year-old boy being rescued from a blaze in Shortsville, then being airlifted to Strong Memorial Hospital.

A little before midnight the Ontario County 911 Center received calls reporting that a house at 19 Palmyra Street in Shortsville was on fire. The Shortsville and Manchester fire departments were called to the scene- and one caller stated that there could be children trapped inside the home.

The first arriving personnel confirmed a working structure fire, with Shortsville Fire Department being assisted on-scene by firefighters from Farmington, Veterans Affairs, Port Gibson, Clifton Springs, and Phelps.


It took several hours for the fire to be brought under control, according to Harloff’s update.

The two story residential structure was occupied by one adult and five children at the time of the fire. The adult and four of the children escaped to safety prior to first responders arriving on-scene.

However, the 15-year-old male was reported missing- and a search of the second story ultimately resulted in his rescue. CPR was initiated by awaiting EMS crews, which included care for acute cyanide poisonings and smoke inhalation. Cyanide is often a byproduct of burning plastics and found in the blood stream of fire victims, according to Harloff.

The 15-year-old was airlifted to Strong Memorial Hospital’s Trauma Center.

Harloff said that firefighters were challenged by responding to the fire, due to the fact that it was owned by a second generation firefighter and his family. The owner of the home is a member of the Manchester Fire Department. “The situation was further complicated when one of the children is reported missing,” Harloff wrote. “The combined firefighters and EMS personnel were able to successfully affect a rescue of the child from the second floor and continue to work on the child to re-establish a beating heart.”



The house was eventually extinguished- and the homeowner, as well as four other children made it from the residence safely. Ontario County Chaplin Services and Red Cross responded to the scene.

The fire is under investigation at this time, deputies said in a report. State Route 21 between Main and Water streets was shut down for several hours.


Photo credit: 13WHAM News



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