Freeport man and his three dogs die in house fire

A 72-year-old man and his son were in the residence but only the son was able to escape with no injuries
Published: Sep. 16, 2022 at 6:53 PM CDT
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FREEPORT, Ill. (WIFR) -A home in Freeport located on Wright Street and Float Avenue has been destroyed after it randomly catches fire early Friday morning.

The home was owned by a 72-year-old man who lived with his five dogs. Freeport Fire Department states the man and three of his five dogs perished in the fire from smoke inhalation.

Brittany Parsons lives a few houses down from where the home was on fire and had called 911 after she noticed the left side of the home was encased in flames.

“Came about 6:30 in the morning to take my son to the bus and the side of the house was on fire,” said Parsons.

She says she watched as the 72-year-old’s son ran around the home screaming for his father who was trapped inside. She heard an explosion and than a tree fell which compelled her to drive over to the fire station and demand for help.

“I’m saying “he cant breathe, he cant breathe,”” she said.

First responders were able to enter through a window and pulled the man out of an adjacent window. They began to perform CPR on the front lawn, but after multiple failed attempts to revive him, they made the decision to immediately transport him to FHN hospital. He did not survive.

Freeport township trustee, Joy Sellers, says house fires in the area don’t happen. The last time a house fire occurred it stayed standing and became an eye sore for five years. Now she is concerned it will happen again.

“We never see any upkeep or building up in our neighborhood, so that’s the thing that concerns me the most,” said Sellers.

Neighbors claim the cause of the fire most likely was electrical but authorities say they are not able to confirm anything just yet.

“The situation is under investigation with our fire marshall and also in conjunction with the state fire marshall,” said Chief Scott Miller, Freeport Fire Department chief, “No working smoke detectors, there was no audible alarms. There’s no indication that there was an early warning to the residents, to the occupants of that house.”

If you live in a single family home in the City of Freeport and are in need of smoke detectors, the Freeport fire department will provide and install them for free.