CHINA — A state police detective driving Thursday night on Route 3 noticed a fire at a residence, stopped and helped one of the owners out of the house.

The fire destroyed the home and an attached garage owned by Rita and Richard Lessard. A fire in a woodstove in the garage ignited the blaze.

According to a news release from Steve McCausland, spokesman for the Maine Department of Public Safety, when Detective Scott Quintero arrived, Richard Lessard was still in the house. Quintero went into the home and brought him safely outside.

Rita Lessard had awakened to a smoke detector going off and called 911. She was not injured, but her husband was taken to a hospital to be checked out for smoke inhalation.

The fire flattened the house, and the couple lost all their possessions in the house and two cars.

Fire marshal’s investigators were able to pinpoint the woodstove as the cause after determining the extent of the damage.

Colin Ellis — 861-9253

[email protected]

Twitter: @colinoellis

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