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Body found in burning North Spokane home

Spokane Fire District 9 firefighters Brooks Leftwich and Gavin Horst carry fire hose back to their truck Tuesday. (Dan Pelle)
Spokane Fire District 9 firefighters Brooks Leftwich and Gavin Horst carry fire hose back to their truck Tuesday. (Dan Pelle)

Firefighters responding to mobile home fire make discovery

Firefighters found a body in a burning mobile home Tuesday morning north of Spokane.

Doug Bleeker, deputy chief of Spokane County Fire District 9, said the body was found in the living room.

Neighbors identified the man who lived at the mobile home as Dennis McGurk, 52. Bleeker said he could not confirm if the person found in the trailer is McGurk until after the Spokane County Medical Examiner’s Office completes an autopsy.

Michelle Lowry, who lives in the neighborhood, said McGurk has been an outstanding and friendly neighbor.

“I don’t think we’ve shoveled in the six years that we’ve lived here,” Lowry said. “He’s just the kindest man.”

Firefighters were called to the mobile home at 6717 N. Julia St. just before 10 a.m.

Kevin McCarty, a neighbor, said McGurk’s brother discovered the fire when he stopped by to check on him. By that point there was too much smoke to enter the trailer.

McCarty said McGurk moved to the property, which is owned by McGurk’s parents, around 2006. He previously lived in a home that was taken to make way for the North Spokane Corridor, McCarty said. County records show that the mobile home property, which is near the entrance to the north Spokane freeway, is owned by Patrick and Carol McGurk.

Bleeker said Spokane Fire Department crews were the first on scene and discovered the body.

The fire is under investigation. Although the structure appears to be intact from the outside, it’s likely to be a total loss because of intense heat and smoke damage, Bleeker said.

The last death in a fire within Spokane County Fire District 9 occurred on Nov. 16.

This story was changed on Feb. 7, 2013 to remove an incorrect middle initial in Dennis McGurk’s name.



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