FAYETTE COUNTY, Ga. - Three family members perished when their Fayette County home went up in flames late Saturday night. Fire officials confirm they found bodies of two victims within 12 feet of the front door.
Fire investigators are not yet releasing the names of the people killed in the blaze. They said the victims include a married couple and their adult daughter.
Fayette County Fire Chief David Scarborough said they don't believe anyone intentionally set the blaze in the log cabin along Highway 92 south of Fayetteville, but they still aren't sure how it started, though they think it began along the outside of the structure.
A passerby spotted the flames and called 911 around 11 p.m. Saturday night. Scarborough said his crews were on the scene in minutes, but the home was fully involved with flames, making any rescue impossible. They recovered the bodies of the victims Sunday.
"Two of them were found probably within 10 to 12 feet of the front door, and one was found lying face down beside one of the beds," said Scarborough. "I can only theorize, but I believe they were attempting to get out, but conditions were untenable. There's no doubt how much smoke was involved."
Scarborough said the GBI confirmed all three died of smoke inhalation.
"It's an old log cabin," said the victims' neighbor Mike Peter. "The had it built. He bought the kit and had it built."
Peter spotted the flames around 11:30 p.m. and rushed outside. He said there was no way anyone could have conducted a rescue.
"It was totally engulfed to the point where there was no chance or even getting in to save anyone," said Peter. "It was just unbelievable."
Irene Woods lives across the road and spotted the flames around 11:30 p.m. She said she knew the family but also added they were private people who kept to themselves. She said the three deaths are a tragedy for everyone in the neighborhood.
"It's terrible," said Woods. "It's really bad. I haven't recovered from it."
Investigators are still trying to determine how the fire started.