Archive for Monday, April 23, 2001

Leavenworth Co. house fire kills one

Neighbors say widow died in blaze

April 23, 2001

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A fire that took a life and destroyed a home early Sunday is under investigation by the Leavenworth County Sheriff's Department and the Kansas Fire Marshal's office.

Authorities refused to identify the victim but said an autopsy would be performed.

Firefighters from Tonganoxie and several surrounding townships
battle a blaze that destroyed a rural Leavenworth County home and
apparently killed the person who lived there. The fire north of
Tonganoxie was reported about 6 a.m. Sunday.

Firefighters from Tonganoxie and several surrounding townships battle a blaze that destroyed a rural Leavenworth County home and apparently killed the person who lived there. The fire north of Tonganoxie was reported about 6 a.m. Sunday.

Firefighters from Tonganoxie and several area townships responded about 6 a.m. Sunday to the blaze near 211th Street and Kissinger Road, about 7 miles north of Tonganoxie.

The sheriff's department would say only that the victim was 89 years old; officers refused to specify the victim's gender or release any other information, including the amount of property loss.

Two neighbors in the area, both of whom declined to give their names, said the victim was a woman who had lived in the farmhouse by herself.

Her husband died several years ago, one neighbor said.

"She became kind of a recluse after he died," said one man who lives nearby. "She liked to mess with flowers. She was a friendly woman in her own way."

She also liked cats, the man said.

"People would come out here and dump their cats, so they were always showing up and she would take them in," he said.

Another man who lived nearby said he first learned of the fire shortly before 6 a.m. when another neighbor called him.

"I looked out and it was really blazing," he said.

A pile of black, smoldering rubble was all that remained of the home Sunday evening.

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