Clipped From The Decatur Daily Review

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 - FOURTEEN PAGES TODAY, Elderly Injured Four...
FOURTEEN PAGES TODAY, Elderly Injured Four Escape, Suffer in 1 Below Zero Temperature Temperature Decatur's third disastrous fire In as many days today claimed the lives of an elderly couple and brought injuries to three other per-lons. per-lons. per-lons. Mr. and Mrs. Elic Bafford, aged 89 and 78, were burned to death at 5 a. m. today when flames gutted gutted a long, two-story two-story two-story frame building building at 909 South Jackson street, in which six persons made their home. George A. Sargent, 50, owner of the building, was the only occupant occupant to escape injury, although he was overcome by the fumes. The others injured were: Mrs. George A. Sargent, severe burns on hands, neck and head. Phillip Sargent, 53. George's brother, broken right foot and ankle. ankle. Mrs. Ofel Barker, 42, bruises and cut on left leg. Firemen answered the call at 5:13 a. m., but by that time the building was enveloped in roaring flames. Pumpers from No. 1 and No. 2" enginehouses answered the summons as well as the service truck from No. 1. Abrams Starts Probe Tom Abrams, deputy state fire marshal, this morning opened an investigation into the cause of the blaze. While inspecting the ruins with Fire Chief Will Piatt, Mr. Abrams said that it may have been started by spontaneous igni tion of oiled rags used on autos Cars owned by George and Phillip Sargent were kept in the building George Sargent estimated the loss at $10,000, but fire department officials said it would not exceed $2,500. No insurance was carried. The fire was discovered at 5 a. m. by Mrs. Barker, who, along with Phillip Sargent, occupied upstairs upstairs rooms. Awakened by dense smoke, Mrs. Barker rushed from her quarters to awaken Phillip Sargent. Together Together they ran to the stairs, where they were forced back by flames. They then turned back to the unoccupied unoccupied north side of the building, building, where Phillip shattered a window window and the pair plunged 15 feet to the icy surface below. Mrs. Barker Barker landed on top of Phillip, and both were injured in the fall. Summons Firemen The downstairs rooms on the south side of the building were occupied occupied by Mr. and Mrs. George A. Sargent and Mr. and Mrs. Baf ford. George Sargent, awakened by the shouts of his two tenants overhead, overhead, ran to the nearby home of his mother, Mrs. Katie Sargent, 9131; South Jackson street, to summon summon firemen. Meantime, Mrs. George Sargent, ill of influenza, rushed into the apartment of her brother-in-law brother-in-law brother-in-law brother-in-law brother-in-law and sister, Mr. and Mrs. Bafford. But before she could get there, she collajised. Flames quickly surrounded surrounded her, cutting off help. After calling the fire department. George Sargent ran back into the flaming building. He heard his wife cry out in pain but twice he was beaten back by the flames in his attempt to rescue her. Finally. Mrs. George Sargent was rescued by a neighbor. Mrs. Granville Granville Shepherd. 921 South Jackson street, with the aid of George himself scarcely able to walk. Mrs. Shepherd is Mr. Sargent's sister. Die of Suffocation Mr. and Mrs. Bafford. both suffering suffering the infirmities of old age. were trapped in their rooms and died of suffocation. Their bodies were removed shortly after by firemen. firemen. The four survivors escaped with nothing but their night clothes, all else being destroyed by the flames. The Salvation Army has launched a drive to obtain beds, clothing and food for the victims, according to Erig. W. R. Conway. The building. 80 by 36 feet, was constructed in 1930 for use as the George Bafford Gravity Level Factory, Factory, but the depression prevented its opening for that purpose. Since 1936 the building hiis served as a home for" the Sargents after being used as a dance hall in 1934 and 1935. As a dance hall it was first known as the "Wild Canary," later as the "Trianon." George Sargent is a cabinet maker, maker, employed by the recreation department. department. Mr. Sargent said that he had planned to open his factory next year, but it will now be impossible, lor all his tools also were destroyed in the fire. Inquest Probably Thursday The body of Mr. Bafford was taken taken to the Dawson and Wikoff funeral funeral home, and the body of Mrs. Bafford to the Moran and Sons' home. Dr. I. V. Grissom. coroner, said that an inquest into the deaths prbabry will be conducted Thursday Thursday night.. A Moran ambulance took Philip Sargent, Mrs. George A. Sargent and Mrs. Barker to the Decatur and ; Macon County hospital, where they j were released after emergency j treatment. j Today's fire was the third disas- disas- j trous blaze in Decatur since the! start of 1940. Early New Years! day, the Elks Country club, outside ! the city limits on the west shore j cf Lake Decatur, was burned Xol Couple Burned to Death, Three as 5 A.M. Fire Sweeps Building TWO BURN Flames which swept through this frame building at 909 South 5P The charred body of one of the victims, Mr. and Mrs. Elic Bafford, is about to be loaded Two of tnose wno escaped the flames are Mr. and Mrs. George Sargent, shown here after Mrs. Sargent received the ground. Then, shortly after noon on the same day. the Church : of God at Haworth avenue and ; West Macon street, was gutted by ' flames. ! 17 Fire Calls In 3 Days Mrs. Br.fford leaves a brother, W. ; W. Griffith, of Windsor, and three: sisters. Mrs. May Jones, of Wind-; Wind-; Wind-; sor; Mrs. Viola Jackson, of Cali-: Cali-: Cali-: fornia. and Mrs. George Sargent j Mr. Bafford leaves two daughters' and two sons from a previous rr.3r- rr.3r- j riage, Mrs. E. J. Moreland, of De-j De-j De-j catur; Mrs. Ora Lar.gley. of Macon; 1 : I i TO DEATH, FOUR ESCAPE IN EARLY MORNING FIRE Jackson street at 5 a. m. today cost the lives of an elderly and onto an ambulance stretcher by firemen, who can be seen dimly in the smoke in the treatment at Decatur and Macon County hospital for severe burns to her hands. Mrs. Sargent collapsed and had to Calvin Bafford, of Jersey City, and; Charles Bafford. of Fallon, Nev. j The sub-zero sub-zero sub-zero weather has brought i an unprecedented number of fires, i 17 calls having been received in the past three days by the fire j department ! A mitten used in opening a fur- fur- j nace door caught fire at the home: of Mrs. Sarah A. Webb. 1237 East-Prairie East-Prairie East-Prairie avenue, at 2:37 p. m. Tues-: Tues-: Tues-: day. Smoke accumulated in the-basement the-basement the-basement but there was no dam-1 dam-1 dam-1 age. according to firemen. j An overheated furnace ignited a THE DECATUR REVIEW infirm couple, while four other persons had a narrow escape. background. Mr. Bafford years ago had the building erected as for a factory. Recently it has be carried out after aiding a sister to safety. (Herald-Review (Herald-Review (Herald-Review Photon) rafter in the basement of the Luster Luster & Rechtin Ford garage. 385 East Prairie avenue, at 7:25 p. m. yesterday. Loss was slight firemen firemen said. In the last two of eight calls yesterday, firemen were summoned summoned at 9 p. m. to the O. C. Carter barber shop, 1021 North Water street where flying sparks had set fire to an awning, and at 9:22 p. m. to the 200 block West Eldorado street where a flue was burining out. Tw0 firemen today remained ill Three were taken to the hospital hospital for treatment of burns. been used ments. Fighting the fire was a cold job, it was found by Henry F. Holderness, fireman from station station No. 2. in their homes as a result of the blaze which gutted the Church of God early Monday afternoon. Walter Walter Morenz who was overcome by the fumes, has been placed under an oxygen tent in his home at 1040 North Warren street. Capt William T. Swartz of No. 6 station is under a physician's care in his home at 1729 North College College street, suffering from a heavy cold which, Chief Piatt said, was aggravated while on duty at the church fire. mainly as apart- apart- oil B. 22 thp far of by is for an specialist be be no of of p. 22, in

Clipped from
  1. The Decatur Daily Review,
  2. 03 Jan 1940, Wed,
  3. Page 14

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