The Tri-Valley United way is accepting financial donations to help those affected by Monday's explosion in Farmington, including residents of surrounding homes.

It was a devastating day, with one veteran firefighter killed, five other firefighters injured, and the building's maintenance worker sent to Boston for treatment. Like many Maine fire companies, several of the firefighters were related. The deceased, 68-year-old Captain Michael Bell, is the brother to another of the injured, Fire Chief Terry Bell. Captain Scott Baxter and his father, Theodore Baxter, were among the five injured firefighters. So the impact on their families is great.

There are the employees of LEAP, whose place of employment was destroyed on Monday. And the local residents who lived near the building, whose own homes sustained significant damage. They've been evacuated and can't go home until their houses are deemed safe.

The cleanup is going to be massive, and the financial impact on the injured, the displaced, and the out-of-work will be felt for a long time. So the Tri-Valley United Way has set up a donation fund to help ease the burden. Log onto the organization's website to contribute. Our thoughts are with the people of Farmington, as they work to recover and rebuild.

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