December 8, 2013 in City

In brief: Teenage boy dies on Delta flight


A 16-year-old passenger suddenly died on a Delta Air Lines flight from Seattle to Atlanta on Saturday morning, forcing the plane to land in Spokane.

The boy had a prior medical condition but was cleared to fly, Spokane Fire Assistant Chief Brian Schaeffer said. However, at about 10 a.m., he had a medical emergency, going into respiratory arrest and then cardiac arrest.

It was the boy’s first time flying, Schaeffer said.

Schaeffer said the boy comes from a military family, and several members of the family were on their way to Atlanta because his father was being transferred from Joint Base Lewis-McChord.

The crew of Flight 128 attempted to perform CPR on the boy but couldn’t resuscitate him. The plane landed at Spokane International Airport. There were 258 passengers on the flight who later returned to the aircraft to complete their trip, Delta spokesman Michael Thomas said.

No other flights were affected, airport spokesman Todd Woodard said.

The boy’s body is now at the Spokane County Medical Examiner’s office, where an autopsy will determine the exact cause of death.

Touchmark fire does little damage

A blaze at a retirement community on the South Hill on Saturday was confined to minor damage to the building.

At 7:36 a.m., an automatic fire alarm was received from 2929 S. Waterford Drive, the Touchmark apartment complex, according to a news release. Residents evacuated the 499-unit complex as crews arrived from nearby Station 11.

The fire was contained to one wall, with smoke visible from the eves of the first, second and third floors, according to the release.

More than 40 firefighters extinguished the blaze in about 35 minutes, according to the release. No one was injured.

The Spokane Fire Department said hard-wired smoke alarms, smoke-activated magnetic fire doors and automatic sprinklers in the building saved lives and prevented the spread of fire and loss of life.

Help compile list of holiday homes

Come across a particularly festive holiday house? Does your neighbor put up enough lights to be seen from the International Space Station? We want to know about it.

We’re creating a database of homes decorated for the holidays. Visit and click the “Add a location” button. There, you’ll be asked to provide an address for the festive home, as well as a brief description. We’ll need your contact information, too, but don’t worry – we’ll keep that information to ourselves.

The list will be posted at holidaylights, where you can see all of the addresses, sort them by neighborhood or even create maps for your own personal tour. We’ll publish a round-up of the decorated homes on Dec. 21 in the Today section.

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