MOUNT VERNON, Ohio (WCMH) — A woman trapped upstairs during a house fire died before firefighter could reach her.
The fire was called into the 911 center just after 5am Monday by a neighbor of the North Harrison Street duplex in Mount Vernon.
Firefighters say flames were pouring from this first floor window when they rolled up, forcing them to knock them down before finding a woman in her late 50s dead in her second-floor kitchen.
At first, the woman’s 30-year-old daughter was thought to be in the home too, but when police contacted their next of kin, she was found alive.
“Through that investigation, they found the daughter that had escaped this fire with soot and burns on her,” said Mount Vernon Fire Chief Chad Christopher.
The fire chief said the daughter ran a mile to a relative’s home. Mount Vernon police are questioning her at the hospital.
A neighbor who knew the victim for more than 30 years described her as a kind heart who raised two daughters.
Investigators said the fire had a head start, making a quick entry impossible.
“It is very difficult when we have reports that somebody’s in there; we want to get in there as fast as we can,” said Chief Christopher.
Chief Christopher said his firefighters did not hear or see any working smoke detectors during the fire or after.
The State Fire Marshal and Knox County Coroner are still investigating this fatal fire. NBC4 will have more details when they become available.