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    Default Utah-Fatal Ogden Structure Fire

    One Person Dies in Ogden Apartment Fire
    November 10th, 2005 @ 7:13am
    (KSL News) One person is dead and more than a dozen families are homeless this morning after a fast-moving fire rips through an apartment complex in Ogden.

    The fire started last night after 10:00 at the Canyon Cove Apartments at 1463 Canyon Cove Lane, and spread to trees and throughout the complex.

    Firefighters spent the night evacuating residents and trying to keep the fire from spreading to the other buildings. Due to the size of the fire, several agencies were called out to help.

    Dozens of firefighters are still on the scene this morning, dousing hot spots.The apartment building is destroyed.

    Firefighters say when they arrived, their priority was rescuing residents from their balconies. The man who died was found in a third-floor stairway.

    The cause of the fire is still under investigation. The roof of the building collapsed, which could make the investigation more difficult.
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    Default Update

    Ogden fire kills woman

    Man arrested in blaze; 20 families displaced

    By Joseph M. Dougherty
    Deseret Morning News
    OGDEN A man has been arrested and is being held without bail after a fire Wednesday night at the Canyon Cove apartments that claimed the life of a woman and displaced 20 families, including a woman who fled Hurricane Katrina in September.
    Brian Nicholson, Deseret Morning NewsFirefighter Brad Miller rescues a cat from one of the apartments. About 12 other pets were killed by the blaze. Jacob Leoncini, 21, was booked into the Weber County Jail on investigation of causing a catastrophe and criminal homicide. Witness descriptions led investigators to Leoncini, who admitted he started the fire by putting a burning cigarette on a couch, Ogden Police Lt. Scott Sangberg said.
    Dana Byrd, a 43-year-old woman who lived on the third floor of the building, was found dead in a hallway by firefighters sent to the 24-unit complex about 10:30 p.m. Wednesday after dispatchers received numerous frantic phone calls from trapped residents.
    Most tenants managed to escape or were rescued by firefighters. Twenty families have been displaced by the fire.
    Tyrone Rogers, a former maintenance supervisor for Canyon Cove who lives in the building east of the one destroyed by the blaze, managed to put out a fire in the first-floor stairwell, allowing residents on the first floor to get out.
    He was able to put out the fire in the stairwell despite being cut and burned when grabbing a fire extinguisher from the building's burning laundry room. He helped residents outside, including one who was unconscious from smoke inhalation.
    "I was just hoping to get people out," said Rogers, who helped residents in four apartments escape before being taken to McKay-Dee Hospital for burns and smoke inhalation.
    "I wish nobody would have died," Rogers said in between visits to his hospital room by residents he had helped.
    The fire was under control by about 3 a.m. Thursday after more than $1 million damage, said Dave Owens, Ogden deputy fire chief.
    About 12 pets were found dead in various apartments, Owens said.
    Resident Debbie Hodges' dog, Sass, survived and may have helped save her. Hodges, whose move to Ogden from Biloxi, Miss., was put ahead of schedule by police evacuation orders as Hurricane Katrina approached the Gulf Coast this past September, said her dog began to bark and she heard voices outside of her second-floor apartment about 10:45 p.m.
    When she got up to see what was happening, a police officer on a ladder shined a flashlight in her window and told her the building was on fire and she needed to get out.
    "Not again" was her first thought, she said, after being rescued from a stairwell that she said was a "wall of black" when she tried to leave her apartment.
    When told that a suspect in the fire had been arrested, Hodges said she could not believe someone had intentionally set the blaze. "A hurricane is an act of nature. I can't comprehend it."
    Hodges and the other families are being helped by the American Red Cross of northern Utah with housing rentals and other basic needs, said Marcie Valdez, development director for the Red Cross chapter. The fire, which brings to 19 the number of serious emergencies the chapter has handled since July 1, will likely deplete the rest of its $67,000 budget, Valdez said.
    Wal-Mart has donated $200 gift cards to the residents, and the Swanson Family Foundation has provided starting-over kits that include dishes, blankets and cleaning supplies.
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