Ex-Lyon Township fire chief rescued from fire at his home

Former fire chief Les Cash rescued by his son, township maintenance worker


LYON TOWNSHIP, Mich. – Residents of Lyon Township are pitching in to help a former fire chief who is now a fire victim.

Les Cash, 70, is wheelchair-bound and in hospice care. Richard Fairfield, a maintenance worker for the township, saw smoke coming from Cash's home Saturday afternoon.

"I thought maybe he was having a fire in his fireplace to save natural gas," said Fairfield. "I realized smoke was coming out of the ridge vents of the garage."

He called 911 and alerted Cash's son Dan, who lives in the same neighborhood. Both men brought Cash out of the house as it was beginning to fill with smoke. He and his wife were not injured.

"It seemed like a matter of seconds, it went from light smoke to fully engulfed," said Dan Cash, a former firefighter himself.

Now many in the community are raising money to help a man who was always there to help them. The New Hudson Leo's Coney Island is dedicating 20 per cent of sales until 9 p.m. Thursday.

"It's to cover medical expenses, living expenses, whatever he needs," said Ron Lopez, who organized the fundraiser.

Cash worked at the Lyon Township Fire Department for 40 years, including 30 as chief.

"I'm proud of how he took care of our family, and the community like it was our family," said Dan Cash.

The former chief is now in assisted living.

The fire destroyed his garage and parts of the attached home. A cause of the fire has not been determined.