A hockey player with roots in Amery has recently proven he thinks just as fast during a fire as he does on the ice. His speedy reaction during a recent tragedy prevented a terrible situation from being much worse.
Martin Moioffer shared he started playing hockey at a pretty young age. He said, “My father was the assistant coach for the Amery high school team so I was pretty much born into it.” He greatly enjoys the game and said, “I love being able to compete and better myself but I also like to be part of a team that can work together to accomplish great things.”
Moiffer’s hockey dreams led him away from Amery after sixth grade. Eventually he went on to live and play hockey in Des Moines, IA, Sioux Falls, SD and currently Danvers, MA. He has been in Danvers for the past year-and-a-half, living with his host mother, Robin Kellow and host brothers; fellow East Coast Spartan hockey players, Trey Stober, Colin Stewart and Alex Sedillo.
June 18, Moioffer was the only hockey player home when he smelled fire while playing video games upstairs. “I ran downstairs and noticed that half of one of our couches was on fire. I immediately ran back upstairs to my room to grab a towel and then ran to the bathroom where my host mother, Robin, was taking a shower. I yelled that the house was on fire and that she needed to get out,” said Moioffer. Next, he wet the towel from his room’s bathroom sink. The smoke was filling the entire house and it was getting really difficult for him to see. He said, “I ran downstairs with the towel to try to put out the fire. I threw the wet towel over the top of the fire and it extinguished part, but not all of it. I then began to fill a laundry bin with water in the sink. The smoke was choking and black. I remembered Robin upstairs and ran to help her. She was telling me that she couldn’t see and that she needed help. I listened for her voice but couldn’t find her. I turned my phone light on and she found me.”
Moioffer then led her outside of the house. She yelled and asked where the family’s dog, Sparky, was. “I dialed 911 and handed her the phone. I then ran back inside and upstairs to search for the dog. I quickly found him and picked him up. I ran back downstairs and out of the house where I set the dog down. I ran back inside to where I had been filling the laundry basket and picked it up to try to put the fire out again. I tossed the water on top of it but it was too late. I evacuated the house and got Robin away from the building as we waited for the firemen to come,” said Moioffer.
The fire department arrived 10 minutes after the call. It took less than 30 minutes to completely extinguish the fire. The cause of the fire seems to be a candle. The fire damage included the kitchen, living room and dining room. The smoke damage has affected the entire house. Moioffer said, “I lost all my clothes and items to smoke damage. I tried to salvage my more sentimental items from family and loved ones and will attempt to restore them as best as I can.”
He shared that during the fire he doesn’t remember doing much thinking. “Whatever ran through my mind, I did. I knew I needed to make sure everyone in the house was OK and that I needed to try and put the fire out to save the house. I did my best to remain calm and act quickly,” said Moioffer. Danvers Deputy fire Chief Robert Amerault believes with confidence Moioffer saved his host mother’s life. Because of saving both her life and the family dog, his host mother considers him a hero.
His Amery family includes his parents, Mark and Deb, and brothers Case and Calvin. His parents and older brother had just visited him in Danvers the week before for his high school graduation. They had left just days before the fire occurred.
Moioffer really enjoys living out East. He said, “I love the rivalry I have with my sports teams, the Packers, Brewers and Bucks, against the sports teams of Boston. I also like the teammates and new friends and family that I have made out here.” There are times though that he does long for his home of Amery. “I miss my family. I miss being able to do fun things with my mom, dad and brothers. I also miss all of my old friends that I lost touch with when I started moving around for hockey. I still keep in contact with a few that I am really close with but not nearly as many as when I lived in Amery,” he said.
At the end of the summer, he will leave Massachusetts and head to Maine where he will play with his new team, the Twin City Thunder to continue his hockey career. Until then, Moioffer’s plans are to be there for his host mother as she begins the process of rebuilding.