Woman Found Dead Inside Home After Delaware County Fire


UPDATED: Thursday January 2, 2014 11:44 PM

Emergency crews discovered a woman's body following a fire in a mobile home park near Westerville.

Harlem Township firefighters responded to the blaze in the 1100 block of Fancher Road.

Fire investigators say the home was filled with fire and smoke by the time crews arrived.

A neighbor spotted the smoke first.

"When I come home from work tonight, I was down on Harlem Road and had seen the smoke and I'm like, what in the world," said neighbor Brett Ford.

Ford soon learned that smoke was coming from his neighbor's mobile home. He says the woman is bed-ridden and he helped take care of her for quite some time.

"As soon as I come in and see her trailer was smoked out like that, I knew. She wasn't able to get up and move on her own," said Ford.

He says he made sure emergency crews were called. He felt he did all he could. Now, he says he's reflecting on the woman he describes as generous and giving.

"You know, we're blessed to have our health and be able to move around, and when you don't and you're immobile and you can't move anywhere, she couldn't even help herself, and get out of the house, even if she would have known. And to me, that's the part that shakes me up a little bit," said Ford.

On the other side of the charred home, neighbor Angela Crouch says she saw the smoke, but never knew anyone was inside.

"It's really terrible. It makes you think about you know, what you're doing when it's real cold like this. You need to watch what you're doing, because it'll take but a minute," said Crouch.

She took these pictures, as she says she watched the smoke change colors from brown to white and blow across neighboring homes.

The exact cause of this deadly fire is still unknown.

"I can tell you living in these trailers like this and they get old, and you don't have people check the electrical or check the furnaces, or check these other things, anything can go wrong," said Ford.

Investigators from the State Fire Marshal's Office say they're taking a close look at the home to see what started this fire.

They say they're also awaiting autopsy results, which they say may come as early as Friday.

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