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NT: Home of fireman burns; GoFundMe page created

Wed, Aug 3rd 2016 06:30 pm

Fire follows threatening letter

Gratwick Hose Volunteer Fire Co. firefighter Kenneth Walker's Oliver Street apartment was set on fire Wednesday morning, after he received an anonymous, threatening letter Monday night.

According to media reports, four of the apartment building's units were seriously damaged. 

Details remain incomplete, as investigations continue.

The letter drew the ire of North Tonawanda Mayor Arthur G. Pappas and Common Council members.

Pappas read a short statement before Tuesday's regular meeting, addressing the racist letter placed in Walker's mailbox.

"Needless to say, we are appalled by this situation, as it does not represent what the City of North Tonawanda stands for," Pappas said. "I, as mayor, along with the Common Council and the people of this city, will not tolerate this type of behavior in our community."

Walker is African-American.

The mayor added the matter is under investigation by authorities, which includes the FBI. He said the city will provide the resources needed to apprehend the perpetrator for what he called "cowardly and disgusting behavior."

"Any threats against our police, fire or other personnel is taken very seriously," he said.   

Donations for Walker and his family will be accepted at the Gratwick Hose Volunteer Fire Co., 110 Ward Road, from 10-2 p.m. Sunday. A GoFundMe account has been made, as well. Donations can be made at www.gofundme.com/2hunioc.

Lauren Zaepfel and Mike Pidanick contributed to this report

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