OAKLAND — Despite burns on his hands, shoulders, arms, back and the soles of his feet, Ryan Shuman returned Tuesday afternoon to sort through the charred wreckage of his mobile home after a fire swept through it early that morning.

Just 12 hours earlier, Shuman, 28, had been taken by helicopter to a Bangor hospital. After being treated for his burns and smoke inhalation, he returned to see what was left of the home at 236 Oak St., where he had lived with his wife, Vicki, 28, and their two children, Isaiah, 9, and Lillian, 6.

He emerged from the blackened hallway, carrying a small wooden box in his bandaged hands.

“This is my grandfather’s stuff,” he said, and pulled out the watch his grandfather, Arthur Voisine, wore the day he died in 2007.

Shuman also held up Voisine’s old Boy Scout knife, a tie clip, and a small metal trinket in the form of a pistol and holster — fitting for Voisine, as he was the first police chief for the town of Vassalboro.

His hair and eyebrows singed, Shuman appeared exhausted. Only small items remain of his family’s previous lives. Though the home was paid for entirely, it was not insured, he said.

“I’m pretty much in shock,” Vicki Shuman said. “I can’t believe it. It’s everything we had.”

She said she feels terrible for her children, who lost all of their Christmas presents “and their entire world.”

Though they are devastated by the fire, they are grateful they made it out alive. For that, they have smoke detectors to thank.

The family awoke to the sound of the smoke detectors and a house filled with heavy smoke and flames.

Ryan Shuman said he “dove for my kids, out the door. I wasn’t even going to try putting it out.”

A neighbor called 911 at 12:39 a.m.

With their children safe, Ryan and Vicki Shuman went back inside the burning home to rescue a dog and see what they could save. The flames had spread too far, however, and both were dressed only in pajamas.

Vicki Shuman said she fell through the floor, injuring her knee. Ryan Shuman suffered first- and third-degree burns.

Oakland Fire Chief Dave Coughlin said there wasn’t enough left of the house to determine an official cause, but it started near the wood stove.

Ryan Shuman wondered whether the fire had originated with a refrigerator, located behind a wall that separated it from the wood stove, as he had cleaned the stove’s pipe a few ago.

Family members took Ryan Shuman to Inland Hospital in Waterville, and from there he was taken by LifeFlight helicopter to Eastern Maine Medical Center in Bangor so doctors could make sure his lungs weren’t burned.

The Shumans had been planning to build or buy a house, they said, but they are unsure when that will happen now. Ryan Shuman works in steel fabrication for JR Metal Frames in Belgrade, and Vicki Shuman works at Walmart.

They will receive some aid from the Red Cross and will live with Vicki Shuman’s parents in Oakland for now, they said. Their two golden retrievers, Zayda and Malaki, survived the blaze.

About 25 firefighters from Oakland, Belgrade, Smithfield, Sidney and Rome responded and were on scene for about three hours, Coughlin said.

Though the Shumans lost nearly everything, he said, they are lucky.

“The smoke detectors saved their lives,” Coughlin said. “There’s no question about that.”

Erin Rhoda — 612-2368

[email protected]

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