Heated dog food caused Belmont fire

BELMONT — Fire Chief Dave Parenti said yesterday that the cause of the fire that gutted a mobile home on Lamprey Road on August 11 was dog food.

Parenti said that apparently a mouse or a squirrel was taking food from the bag of dog food the family kept near the furnace and storing it on top instead.

"The heat from the furnace must have dried the food to the point where it caught fire," Parenti said.

The man who lived there with his family told Parenti that every time he took a shower he smelled something sweet but couldn't imagine what it was.

"It was the dog food cooking on top of the furnace," said Parenti.

Parenti added that something like this is a "one-in-a million" kind of event but "go figure".

He said he was just grateful that the man and his young son were able to get out of the home safely and that no one was hurt in the fire.

Angel Flight brings retired state trooper back to New Hampshire

EPSOM — One week after the fund-raising started for an Angel Flight, retired N.H. State Police Sgt. Cheever "Chuck" Newhall is safely back home in New Hampshire.

Retired New Hampshire State Police Executive Major Dave McCarthy, who began the online fund-raising campaign, said yesterday that Newhall arrived from Florida yesterday and is staying in the Epsom Healthcare Center where they kept a bed open for him while his friends raised the $18,000 for his special flight.

"My heart was proud to see the names of all the people (who contributed to Newhall's GoFundMe page) to come out of the Laconia area," said McCarthy. "These were the people Chuck worked with and lived with."

McCarthy said that about 95- to 98-percent of the people who donated were from former and current state police officers, area police officers, and friends who are in the Lakes Region.

Newhall, who served in Vietnam with the U.S. Marines, was a police officer in Laconia and then with the state police, has Parkinson's Disease and recently suffered a medical setback while recovering from knee replacement surgery.

His wife Sandy said that she was unable to care for him alone in their Florida home and wanted to return to New Hampshire so she and Chuck could be closer to their family — including Belmont Fire Lt. Mike Newhall and his children — their grandchildren.

She said Medicare funds for nursing home care had been exhausted and the goal is to help him get a spot in the Tilton Veterans Home.

No Laconia e-mail addresses revealed in cheating site hack

LACONIA — While e-mail addresses bearing the domain names of several cities and towns in New Hampshire have been found among the data from Ashley Madison. the website matching spouses seeking extra-marital affairs that was recently hacked, City Manager Scott Myers said last week that Laconia is not one of them.

Myers said that the address domains found include the cities of Manchester, Nashua and Dover and town of Milford, which has prompted officials to direct their information technology departments to investigate whether municipal employees have used government e-mail accounts to reach the website.