Daniel Marino and his fiancee, Catherine Delano, were at a Cohasset church Thursday rehearsing for their dream wedding when they got a phone call informing them that their home at 299 North Ave. was in flames.
The two-alarm fire of undetermined origin rendered the two-floor house uninhabitable and destroyed nearly everything of value the young couple had accumulated — including her wedding dress, their wedding rings, tuxedos and the couple’s passports they need to travel to Antigua for their honeymoon.
Luckily, a neighbor rescued Delano’s beloved Brady, a 4-year-old Pug mix, from the heavy smoke and flames before nearly succumbing himself. He was rescued by another passer-by.
Family members were grateful no one got hurt.
“We’re glad they got the dog. That’s (Catherine’s) life, that dog,” said David Marino of Melbourne, Fla., Daniel’s father, who had traveled to Abington for the couple’s wedding that was set to take place Saturday in Cohasset.
He said the family isn’t sure if the wedding will still be held Saturday.
The future bride, who along with the future groom visited the fire scene later on Thursday, said she was just happy Brady was safe and unharmed.
“That’s all I care about,” she said.
Daniel Marino was too upset to talk.
Firefighters from Abington, Brockton, Whitman, Rockland, Norwell and Holbrook responded to the blaze, reported at 5:05 p.m. One firefighter suffered possible injuries related to the heat and was taken to a nearby hospital.
Abington Fire Chief Arthur J. Pelland said the fire may have started in the basement or in a rear section on the first floor and spread quickly through the walls and attic of the single-family home. Firefighters had the fire under control by 6 p.m.
The fire remains under investigation by the state fire marshal’s office, and the cause remains undetermined, Pelland said.
Firefighters cut two holes in the roof of the house to vent the dense smoke and heavy flames.
North Avenue resident Lester Carter said he was shocked when his daughter called to report smoke billowing from the couple’s house. He said he got there as quickly as he could.
“I didn’t know if anybody was inside the house. Then I heard a noise,” Carter said.
The noise sounded like a dog in distress. Carter said he smashed the front window, climbed inside the house and found Brady, terrified and nearly unconscious.
He grabbed the dog and rushed for the window, then nearly succumbed to the smoke.
Fortunately, another Abington resident, Jack Freeman, had seen the smoke and pulled both Carter and Brady to safety.
“I grabbed him and pulled him out the window,” Freeman said.
Sharon Carlson of 298 North Ave. said the first thing she saw was smoke billowing from her neighbor’s house.
“It was smoking. And then all of a sudden it was crazy smoking,” Carlson said.
David Marino said his son and future daughter-in-law have lived in the house for about two years and planned to live there as husband and wife.