CQC residents back at home 12.16

Written by David Green.

It didn’t take long for the residents of Morenci’s Citizens for Quality Care (CQC) adult foster care home to return home after a fire Dec. 7.

The 12 residents were evacuated about 7:30 p.m. that night after a fire was discovered in a room. Most of the residents were transported to the CQC Stephenson Home in Adrian by a bus from Morenci Area Schools, although three went home with family members.

“The residents are back home now,” owner Teresa Chang said Thursday afternoon.

Fire and smoke damage was limited due to quick action from Morenci Fire Department members who noticed the blaze when they were training across the street from the facility.

A state licensing inspector approved the home for reopening on Tuesday, Chang said, and a state fire marshal visited the house Wednesday and gave his OK.

The residents came back home at noon Thursday.

Chang expressed her gratitude to the police, EMTs and fire department, as well as to her own staff.

“Everything happened within seconds,” she said about the response to the fire.

Her staff members Sheila Dillon and Brittney Corey smelled smoke just as fire department members were rushing across the parking lot.

The two staff members immediately started moving residents outside onto the patio and then the fire department took over, Chang said.

Chang said it “was a blessing” that the fire department was engaged in training when the fire occurred.

One resident of the house was suspected of starting the fire and was taken to Herrick Medical Center for mental health observation.

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