Families, fellow firefighters grieving death of two killed in Morris Heights blaze

Family members and fellow firefighters are in mourning Monday after a three-alarm blaze in Morris Heights claimed the lives of two firefighters Sunday.

Four other firefighters were also injured in the blaze after they, along with the two deceased, became trapped and jumped from the fourth floor of East 178th Street. Lieutenant Curtis Meyran, 46, of Battalion 26 and 37-year-old firefighter John Bellew of Ladder 27 were both killed. The other firefighters are being treated at St. Barnabas Hospital and Jacobi Medical Center. The FDNY commissioner says what happened is a powerful example of how firefighters put their lives on the line each day.

The American Red Cross is offering free counseling to the families of the victims and is also helping the almost 50 residents displaced by the fire.

The fire marshal has ruled that an overheated extension cord was the cause of fire. Fire officials also uncovered a possible illegal alteration to a fourth floor apartment, which prevented the firefighters from getting to the fire escape.

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