Two cats were rescued after a stove-top fire engulfed a Grove Street kitchen late Wednesday morning in Ridgewood.
John Ferrito was in transit when he received the call from his wife.
There had been a kitchen fire, his wife said. The Hackensack Univeristy Medical Center employee rushed home. His wife Michele and 17-year-old daughter Katie were shaken up but uninjured. The Ferritos' Cape Cod-style home had sustained major smoke damage and the kitchen was charred, in shambles. And the family cats, Nikita and and Louie, were missing.
Fire crews quickly mobilized upon hearing the dispatch, Ridgewood Fire Chief Jim Van Goor said from the scene. They discovered a fire that had spread from the stove up to the microwave and quickly engulfed the entirety of the kitchen. The fire was contained to the kitchen, though smoke damage was found in other sections of the house.
Soon, firefighter Kyle Monton emerged from the home with a cat perched between his arms. He and fellow volunteer firefighter Dane Knudsen had rescued Nikita. A tearful Michele held Nikita as firefighters continued to search for Louie, who had hidden in a corner when the flames began rising.
Both felines were reunited with their family.
"Police and fire were wonderful," a gracious John Ferrito told reporters minutes after the rescue. "They were very supportive and responded quickly...the firemen did a great job getting them [the cats] to my wife. She was extraordinarily worried. They're OK."
Due to the extensive damage at the kitchen and smoke damage throughout the rest of the house, the Ferrito family will not be able to return to the home tonight.
But with Nikita and Louie in tow, they'll all be together.
Correction: an earlier version misidentified the firefighters who rescused the cat.
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