Help for local police chief whose home was gutted by fire

MUHLENBERG TWP., Pa. - Police from across the region held a heartfelt fundraiser for one of their own who lost almost everything to a massive fire.

Just last week, Heidelberg Township police chief Michael Boyer, and his girlfriend, Caroline DiCenso, principal of Spring Ridge Elementary, lost their home in Millcreek Township, Lebanon County, after it was engulfed in flames.

They were alerted to the fire by their five-year-old, flat-coat retriever, named Lily, officials said.

Thanks to Lily, the couple escaped the home, along with their other dogs, just before the roof collapsed, investigators said.

"She's the real hero behind this whole thing. She's my pride and joy," said Chief Boyer.

To help Boyer and diCenso recover from the devastation a fundraiser was held at the Berks County Fraternal Order of Police, Lodge 71, in Muhlenberg Township.

A big surprise for Caroline DiCenso who lost her voice this week, partly from digging through the rubble of her home.

"Probably all the stress. So I got sick," said diCenso, who added that all the support is keeping her in good spirits. "It's kind of hard to hold it together because once I start crying, I cannot believe the community."

The money raised will go to the Berks County Police Hero's Fund, set up for first-responders in times of need.

"When something like that, no one's obviously prepared to it especially finally, so it allows us to come in and take over some things for the family," said detective Joseph Brown, president of Berks Lodge #71, Fraternal Order of Police.

If you would like to donate to help chief Boyer and Caroline diCenso, you can send your donation to: Berks County Police Hero's Fund, P.O. Box 86, Temple, PA, 19560.

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