Firefighters battle flames Sunday afternoon at a home on Route 120 in Mexico. Owner Charlie “Red” Martin lost five of his eight dogs, his house and all his possessions, Deputy Chief Allen Chartier said Tuesday. Submitted photo

MEXICO — A man lost his home and five dogs in a fire Sunday afternoon on Route 120 in the area of Black Bridge, Mexico Deputy Fire Chief Allen Chartier said Tuesday.

Charlie “Red” Martin was home with his grandson when the fire broke out. Martin said he believes it started in the basement around the wood stove.

There were eight dogs in the house. “They were able to get three of them out, but five of them perished,”  Chartier said.

When they arrived after the 1:50 p.m. call flames had gotten into the first floor, the deputy chief said.

“Before we could make entry, the floor had collapsed, so we weren’t able to make an interior attack. It went up pretty quickly,” he said.

Along with Mexico, about 20 firefighters from in Rumford, Roxbury, Dixfield, Peru and Andover responded.


There were no injuries.

“We don’t know the cause because there was so much damage,” Chartier said.

The Office of the State Fire Marshal was contacted.

“They came out yesterday. I didn’t hear back, but I don’t think they’re going to be able to determine the exact cause anyway,” the deputy chief said.

The residence was a total loss, including possessions.

“We ended up tearing most of the house down,” Chartier said.


He said Martin told him the home was insured.

It didn’t appear there was any damage to the attached garage or its contents, he said.

Firefighters cleared the scene around 6 p.m

Kevin Jamison, manager of the Rumford Aubuchon Hardware, has organized a Go Fund Me page for Martin at

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