Grateful for rescue from fire


To the Editor:

On Monday, May 9, my 97-year-old mother’s house in Tisbury burned down. No one was hurt, thank God. Marge Berlow’s rescue and good luck are a direct result of her caretaker’s grace and agility under pressure, and of the skills and courage of our neighbors, who assisted her off the roof and down a ladder to safety.

Moreover, our deepest of gratitudes go to those first responders who were on the scene within minutes: Tisbury Fire, the Dukes County Sheriff, Edgartown Fire, Oak Bluffs Fire/EMS, Tisbury EMS, and Tri-Town EMS.

In the catastrophe that this house fire was, all the best-right things happened, thanks to those first responders and helpers. Marge was safe. Her caretaker was safe. Neighbors’ homes went unscathed.

And the irreplaceable loss of things like family photos and heirlooms, Marge’s artwork, the weavings she made, her Chicken Alley treasures … my father’s books and his favorite chair … these ashes have actually cleared the air, and helped me and my family come to truly understand that the most important things are people. Relationships. You. Our friends and this community, whose ongoing kindnesses and outpourings of help and assistance in Marge’s well-being, are as breathtaking and humbling as they are life-affirming.

Our family has lived on M.V. for only a mere, almost 30 years. In the single week since the fire, the integrity and compassion of this Island community keeps coming back to us more than 100 lifetimes.

Thank you all.

Now, please go check your smoke detectors and thank the first responders when you see them! Stay safe and sound and in gratitude.

Sam Berlow, on behalf of Marge Berlow and family
Vineyard Haven