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      Long time fireman injured in blaze


      We spoke with Kevin East, Jerry Thomas' son-in-law. He told us Jerry has 2nd degree burns over about 35% of his body, mostly on the upper body area, including hands and arms. At this time it is not expected that he will have to have any skin grafts. He has been sitting in a chair and remains in good condition.East added, the family appreciates all the concern and well wishes.


      University Hospital in Columbia tells us Jerry Thomas is listed in good condition.

      ----------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------A long time Heartland firefighter was seriously injured in an overnight fire.Former LaPlata Fire Chief and current LaPlata fireman Jerry Thomas was flown to a Columbia hospital for treatment of burns after a fire broke out at his residence early Thursday morning.

      LaPlata Fire Chief Bob Couch told KTVO they were called to the Thomas residence in Laplata at 1:22 Thursday morning. The house was fully engulfed in flames when firemen arrived. The home is a total loss.

      Couch told KTVO, Thomas was awakened by smoke; he called the fire department, and then helped both his wife, and his brother, who was visiting, get out of the house safely.

      Couch said Jerry Thomas had burns on his hands and arms.Investigators were on the scene Thursday morning trying to find a cause for the blaze.