Relief followed tragedy on Saturday, as Susan Skramstad's family of Bethel, CT found their cat after it ran away from the fire that caused their ceiling to collapse.

Firefighters from the Brookfield and Stony Hill Volunteer Fire Companies arrived on scene to extinguish the raging inferno that left many friends, family, and neighbors praying for the Skramstads's.

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"Praying that everyone is safe. We are around the corner and will keep an eye for your kitty," one neighbor posted to the fire department's Facebook press release.

Another friend sums up well the love and support the family has gotten thus far: "You know you are truly loved and cared for when the post about your lost fur-baby is shared over 1000 times. Xo" 

According to the Stony Hill Volunteer Fire Company, it took around 2 hours and 50 firefighters to extinguish the large fire. Units arrived on the scene only 3 minutes after they got the call, and the cause is still being determined by the Bethel Emergency Management and Fire Marshal Office.

Skramstad was very communicative with updates after the incident occurred and the outreach thus far has been incredible. Immediately after the cat was found, she posted the relieving update to her page:

I can’t put this out without thanking the most amazing woman ever, that combed through our soot filled, no roof house for hours last night and found him burrowed into a box spring. Kelly Govoni Daniels - we can never repay you. We love you so much and are forever in your debt.

Daniels responded shortly after:

"I love u guys and will do anything I can to help my friends. You deserve the best and my heart feels full and happy I was able to help reunite such an important and beloved family member!! Theres always a silver lining- never lose hope. I love u all!!"

But friends and family didn't just stop after helping to find the cat-- they're also donating to the "Helping the Skramstad Family" GoFundMe page in efforts to financially support the family's recovery.

Alicia Craybas, with permission from the Skramstad's, created the fundraiser. The Fire Company was so kind as to post it to their own Facebook Page. As of late, 170 people have donated over $9,000, which is $4,000 exceeding the original "goal" amount of $5,000.

If you would also like to donate, please visit the link. 

What a tragedy, what a story, and what a resilient effort to recuperate. I'm amazed by the togetherness and teamwork demonstrated by the Bethel community. And I'm also incredibly relieved that their Kitty, Max, was found, safe and sound.

But the cat is just another signifier, for us all, of the criticality of the family unit. Let the Skramstad's support system serve as a microcosm of how to handle devastation the only way-- that is, together.

The full press release from the Stony Hill Volunteer Fire Company is below:

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