Family and friends speak out after tragic Goshen Township fire - 21 News Now, More Local News for Youngstown, Ohio -

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Family and friends speak out after tragic Goshen Township fire

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DAMASCUS, Ohio - A single-story house fire in Goshen Township has taken the life of one person; a person whose family and friends call remarkable.

The family inside of the house woke up to a smoke detector alarm late Saturday night. Three of the family members that were upstairs got out of the house safely.

Justin Kidd, 20, was trapped in the basement at the time of the fire. He was pronounced dead at the scene.

Lieutenant Bill Hoffman of the Damascus Fire Department says when the crews arrived on the scene there was heavy smoke coming from the house and fire visible in the basement.

Green Township and Beloit Township Fire Departments were called for additional assistance.

Justin Kidd's father, Pastor Dave Kidd says the night preceding the events was just a normal Saturday evening.

"I was going over my message for Sunday morning, which was about how the church should share what they have with people in need and people going through hard times," Dave Kidd says. "We were yelling down the stairs and texting him (Justin) that we had dinner."

"He said he had a late lunch and he wasn't hungry, and his mom said, 'You just wanted to come upstairs anyway and give your momma a hug.' And he just smiled and hugged her," he continued.

Dave Kidd says his son was in the basement working on a Youth Group project, as he was one of the youth directors at this father's church, True North Church of Minerva.

His father describes him as a young man of faith with strong convictions who overcame a lot of struggles and was instrumental in a lot of young lives.

"He had Dysthymic disorder, it's a mood disorder, and he struggled with it in his early teen years. But he overcame it and used it as a testimony for youth groups, for kids who were prone to being depressed and into cutting and even suicidal. He had an instant connection with them," Dave Kidd says.

Darlene Ventura Grimm, a member of the church who worked closely with Justin in Youth Group, said he was generally a quiet kid, but he was "goofy" too.

"He was hilariously funny. He had just recently come up with this character called Steven Stuffmister to do the announcements. He always had a joke, and he was always laughing," she says.

Ventura Grimm, who just learned of Justin Kidd's death Monday morning, has a 15-year-old daughter who became good friends with him over the years. She says they would talk and text all the time and he was a very good influence on her.

"He was really coming in to his own recently, as far as being able to pastor the kids, and being able to give them guidance. He had what people would call an 'old soul.' He was very knowledgeable and he was able to reach out to them (the kids)," says Ventura Grimm.

Justin was also a role model to his 14-year-old brother and 12-year-old sister, and a confidante to his twin brother.

"He was a best friend, a hang out buddy," says Dave Kidd. "He cared a lot about his brothers and sisters. He'd come home from school or work and say, 'Hey, let's go get some Chipotle, my treat.' He was always a supporter; always an encourager."

Justin Kidd's twin brother is getting married in July, and his father says he is still the best man.

Dave Kidd and Ventura Grimm both said that they see a tremendous outpouring of kindness and love for the family, not just from the church and community, but from different states and even countries.

"They have gone across the country and to Belize for their ministry, and we got a message from the people in Belize that they ministered saying they are praying for them," says Ventura Grimm.

Dave Kidd says he and his family are receiving everything from clothes, money and cell phones to prayers and kind words.

"The message I didn't get to preach got preached anyway," he says.

The cause of the fire is still undetermined, but an electrical fire is being considered.

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