Elderly Woman Killed In Delaware Fire

Wilmington fire officials are investigating a house fire Sunday afternoon in the city's upper East Side in which an 80-year-old woman died.

The state Medical Examiner's Office will determine how the woman died, said Capt. Michael R. Schaal, spokesman for the Wilmington Fire Department.

Schaal said neighbors reported smoke coming from a second-floor window at 323 E. 13th St. about 1:40 p.m. Firefighters forced their way into the two-story home and found the fire in the second-floor front bedroom.

The home's smoke detectors were blaring when firefighters went inside, he said.

The woman's body was found on the bedroom floor at the foot of the bed. Firefighters pulled her outside, where paramedics tried to save her, Schaal said.

The woman was taken to Wilmington Hospital, where she was pronounced dead.

Paul Miller, who has lived at 315 E. 13th St. for 50 years, said he talked to the woman often but did not know her name. The woman lived in the home with her daughter, he said.

Schaal said fire officials are not sure whether the woman lived with a family member. No one else was home at the time of the fire, and there were no other injuries, he said.

A few hours after the blaze, the Rev. Clyde Knotts of Mount Salem United Methodist Church was talking outside the home with several women, one of whom he said was the victim's daughter. He said the victim attended church services at Mount Salem.

The fire was the second fatal blaze in the city in the past eight days and the fifth fatal fire in the state this year.

Last Sunday, an 89-year-old man died in a house fire in the 900 block of W. 24th St.