Neighbors snap into action to help daycare after small fire breaks out in Aberdeen


No one was hurt as quick-thinking neighbors evacuated three children and an adult from the Wunderland Childcare Center on the 1900 block of Simpson Avenue Friday afternoon after smoke was spotted.

The fire, put out quickly by firefighters, affected the skirting around the crawl space of the light blue wooden shingle building, Battalion Chief Damon Lillybridge said. Two trucks and the chief’s wagon responded to the call as did Aberdeen Police to help with traffic.

Neil Burgess, who lives behind the daycare facility and owns Burgess Mobile Auto Repair across the street, smelled and saw smoke. Burgess, joined by Donovan West and Todd Dean of Grays Harbor Fast Lube, ran into the building and told the children and teachers to leave while they filled up pans of water from the sink inside and attempted to douse the fire.

“I got the kids out,” said West who confirmed three children and one adult were evacuated. “We probably helped save” the building and children, Burgess said, adding that firefighters were on the scene “in two minutes.”

Cause of the fire and extent of the damage had not been determined, Lillybridge said. The children and woman went back into the building about 4 p.m.

Burgess said he was getting calls from his ex-wife and others asking him what happened. “Always glad to help,” he said. “Can’t have my neighbors burning down.”