DSC_5843Kassi Brandeberry plead guilty today for setting a fire that killed Joe Fazenbaker, 14, and seriously injured his stepbrother, Michael Rheinbolt, who is now 14 years old.

In the early morning hours of May 2, 2015, T.F.R.D. crews were summoned to 253 Willard Street in east Toledo after multiple 911 calls reporting a house fire in the 200 block of Willard.

First arriving crew, Engine 13, was met with a wall of fire engulfing the front of 253 Willard Street with threats of spread to the neighboring homes. A deck gun was used to knock down  visible fire to slow its progress. Hoselines were pulled to initiate a “transitional attack” to cool the interior of the home to increase the chances of survival of anyone that may still be inside, followed by an aggressive interior attack of the fire.

Within minutes, an unconscious victim was found on the second floor, and a second victim was found in the bedroom under furniture. Both were rescued from the home and life saving care was initiated immediately on scene and during transport to the hospital.

Tragically, Joe Fazenbaker succumbed to his injuries, while Michael Rheinbolt continues to heal and recover today from his burns.

Brandeberry is scheduled to be sentenced on May 10.