One of three Spokane fire victims identified

MONDAY, DEC. 20, 2010, 2:18 P.M.

A cooking fire in a Spokane motor home led to the death of a 64-year-old man on Saturday night, Fire Chief Bobby Williams reported on Monday.

Major Allen was one of three persons to die in two separate dwelling fires over the weekend.

The Spokane County Medical Examiner Monday was working Monday jato confirm identities of the other two persons and causes of deaths of all three.

Autopsies were ordered on Monday, the medical examiner’s office reported.

Spokane fire officials said that Allen apparently was unable to escape the burning motor home, which was ignited by a cooking fire at 1806 W. Gardner Ave. at 11:48 p.m. on Saturday.

Williams said the side door was blocked by the fire, and Allen apparently tried to get out through a front passenger door.

The hot and fast-moving fire destroyed the home and badly burned the man’s body, firefighters said.

Crews used water to protect adjacent buildings, which had some damage from exposure to heat. The cause of the fire was under investigation.

The second fire at 6325 E. Upriver Lane five hours later claimed two lives, fire officials said.

Crews from Spokane County Fire District No. 9 responded to the fully involved fire at 4:58 a.m. The first arriving crew from a station at Bigelow Gulch and Jensen roads reported flames coming from the roof.

By the time firefighters got into the home northeast of Upriver Dam the floor was beginning to collapse, said Deputy Chief Doug Bleeker.

Twenty firefighters from District 9 were joined by a support vehicle from Fire District No. 4, which provided its converted bus to allow firefighters to get warm and have some hot food and drinks. The bus also has a rest room.

No injuries were reported to firefighters.

The Spokane County Sheriff’s Office sent deputies to the scene to rule out foul play, Bleeker said. The county also sent out its forensic technicians.

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