Burn victim succumbs

The Cairo man rescued from his burning home two weeks ago has died from the wounds he suffered in the fire.
Mr. Jerry Williams, 50, passed away Saturday at Joseph M. Still Burn Center at Doctors Hospital in Augusta.
“It’s a terrible tragedy. We were afraid of his injuries, but hopeful that they would be able to pull some miracle off on him,” said Cairo Fire Chief Jim Fielding. Chief Fielding said he learned the news from Mr. Williams’ wife, “We’ve been in touch with Mrs. Williams every few days.”
Jerry Williams was cooking when a pan of grease caught fire on Tuesday, Jan. 25, at his home, 425 Eighth Street Southwest. Mr. Williams was hampered in his escape by a temporary physical disability, which required him to use a walker. Unfortunately, in his initial attempt to put out the fire by pouring it outside, he left his walker at the stove, and accidentally spilled the burning pan at a rear sliding door. Fire Chief Fielding said it appeared Mr. Williams attempted to escape the house through another exit, but collapsed before he could open and unlock a wrought iron door to the carport. Iron bars covering windows and doors of the home, hindered firefighters’ rescue efforts.
Mr. Williams was stabilized at Grady General Hospital and then taken on a medical flight to the burn center in Augusta hours after the fire.
“To me and the department, it’s just a tragedy,” said Chief Fielding of Mr. Williams’ death, “we do everything humanly possible to train our people, but when it’s the Lord’s will, we’re only human. The Lord’s a lot more powerful than we are.”
Weston’s Funeral Home is in charge of arrangements for Mr. Williams’ funeral. Services are scheduled for 3 p.m., Saturday, at Greater New Corinth Missionary Baptist Church on Third Street Southwest.
Chief Fielding said he and firefighters plan to attend the funeral. “As a department, and me as a chief, I consider everybody in the city part of the family, and I’ve lost a family member.”

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