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Dormitory Fire Injures 34 Students

May 31, 1986

EAST LANSING, Mich. (AP) _ Fire swept through the top floor of a Michigan State University dormitory before dawn Saturday, injuring 34 students, one seriously, a university spokeswoman said.

The 5:27 a.m. blaze, which was put out after about 20 minutes, forced the evacuation of 600 students from six-story Holmes Hall, said Cherryl Jensen.

″I turned over and just saw flames and started running around the room,″ said freshman Sal Giammarustri. ″It was like I was in a dream. I didn’t know if I was going to get burned or die from jumping out the window.″

About 20 of the approximately 100 students living on the floor climbed out of their windows and down fire department ladders, Jensen said. Others fled down stairways.

Most of the injured were taken to four hospitals, treated for smoke inhalation and released, she said.

Christopher Wiegel, 18, of Livonia, who suffered smoke inhalation, was in serious condition at Ingham Medical Center, Jensen said. The other four who were hospitalized were in fair condition at Sparrow Hospital.

The cause of the fire, which did an estimated $30,000 damage, was unknown.

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