Christmas eve fatal fire


December 24, 2006

From The Sun, Dec. 26, 1953:

Two Ellicott City firemen lost their lives and two others suffered injuries yesterday when a 45-foot chimney collapsed and half buried them following an all-night Christmas Eve blaze.

The dead were Joseph A. Stigler , 34, a lieutenant in a volunteer fire-fighting unit, and Charles Ditch, 44, who was taken to St. Agnes Hospital in an unconscious condition and died at 8 o'clock last night.

The injured were Albert Massey, 18, in "serious but not critical" condition at St. Agnes with a fractured leg and deep scalp lacerations , and Lieut. Charles Ash, 40, in serious condition with shock, concussion and possible rib fractures.

All the men lived in Ellicott City.

[Paul McCardell, Sun library researcher]

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