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      La Plata Fire and Rescue hosts fundraiser for one of their own

      Jerry Thomas and his brother, Patrick Thomas. Both survived the house fire, along with Jerry's wife.

      More than a month after losing his home in a fire, a local former fire chief is overwhelmed by the outpouring support of his community.

      All day Saturday, the community of La Plata came together for a fundraiser for the Jerry Thomas family.

      At the town square, there was everything from a dunk tank, to bounce houses, and food. Also, hundreds of t-shirts were for sale.

      The Thomas family lost their home on May 24, and Jerry Thomas sustained several burns from the blaze.

      "I just want to say how thankful I am for the support from the community," said Jerry Thomas, Fire Captain for the La Plata Fire and Rescue. "For the cards, visits at the hospital, and the visits since I been home and the prayers and letters, all of the support is just overwhelming. I'm just so happy about it to know people think that much of me."

      Thomas said he has received letters and cards from people he has never met. Also, he said cards have come in from coast to coast, from his Army buddies in the Korean War.

      Thomas said fighting fires is in his blood, so he still remains a first responder. He said he will not actively put out any fires but he is still responding to EMS calls if needed. Since he has returned home, he said he has responded to two calls, including a car wreck.

      He is slowly getting movement back in his left hand and he said he has to take morphine to ease the pain from the burns he sustained to his right ear. He said he has also lost a lot of weight, and his energy level is about half. On the bright side, he said his left ear has completely healed. Also, he and his family plan on moving into a new home in the same old spot within the next month.

      Here is a link to previous stories.