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In brief: Cause of fatal fire can’t be determined

A fire that killed two Spokane-area women on Dec. 19 burned so hot that the flames obliterated any evidence of how the fire started.

As a result, the fire investigator for Spokane County Fire District No. 9 said Monday that the cause of the fire has been officially listed as undetermined.

UnaBelle Turner, 91, and Jill D. Burdett, 56, died of smoke inhalation, according to the Spokane County medical examiner. Their bodies were found inside the burned house at 6305 E. Upriver Drive.

Deputy Chief Doug Bleeker said the fire was burning through the roof when it was first spotted by witnesses.

Turner’s son, who is listed as the owner of the home, had recently replaced a smoke detector and put fresh batteries in other smoke detectors.

UnaBelle Turner was Burdett’s former mother-in-law. Burdett had provided the elder occupant with in-home care.

Mike Prager