WATERVILLE — A family of five lost two dogs in a fire Thursday night that also damaged their two-story house.

The fire at 11 Louise Ave. was reported just before 7 p.m. The house belongs to Scott and Kim Cornforth, who live there with their son and Scott Cornforth’s parents.

Information on what started the fire in the neighborhood off West River Road was not immediately available Thursday night, but Waterville Fire Chief David LaFountain said the family lost two dogs.

Two other dogs escaped the fire, which appeared to have started in the garage, and a cat was missing Thursday night at around 8 p.m.

The family was not home when the fire started, Scott Cornforth said. “Someone called me and we literally just got here,” he said at around 7:15 p.m.

Cornforth said he was not sure what started the fire, but said he thought it originated in the garage. The two dogs that were found alive belonged to his parents and were found in the basement, where they live, he said.

Cornforth said the family has insurance. The house was still standing Thursday night, but the garage and entire left side of the house appeared heavily damaged and most of the windows were broken.

Neighbors at the scene said they saw flames shooting out of the garage and up the wall of the two-story house, and some said they also heard what sounded like explosions.

“There were massive flames coming out of the garage,” said neighbor Tim Spry, who said another neighbor had alerted him to the fire and he called 911 to report it. “The fire department was here super fast,” he said.

Michelle Holmes, who lives across the street from the Cornforth family, said she heard a boom.

“I looked outside and saw the garage on fire,” said Holmes, who said she too called 911. “The flames were shooting out the window as I was talking and kept going up the front of the house. At one point the garage door just started to melt panel by panel.”

Firefighters from Oakland, Waterville and Winslow responded to the scene as well as the Waterville Police Department.

“This is just going to crush their son,” said Holmes when she heard that two of the family’s dogs had died. “He’s junior high-age and just really nice. He really loved those animals.”

Rachel Ohm — 612-2368

[email protected]

Twitter: @rachel_ohm

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