Early in the hours of Sunday morning, an Oswego police officer was on patrol when he noticed flames and smoke coming from a house on Commercial Street. The officer dispatched for fire crews and went to the scene, where he was met by two residents coming out the front door, yelling for help for the others inside.
After taking several steps in the front door and being overcome by smoke, the officer went around to the back of the house and kicked a door in, where he discovered the back of the house completely engulfed in flames.
Two people died upstairs and one on the downstairs staircase. The deceased have been identified as Charlene Sinclair and Martha Clower, both residents of the house, and Ian Qualls, a 14-year-old from Columbus who was staying the night at the house.
The fire is still being investigated, but authorities have reason to suspect an electrical heater in the back of the home was cause for the fire.
The two residents who escaped the house were Bradley Clower and Orville "Turtle" Nelson, both of Oswego.
Authorities say the smoke alarms did not sound, and advise all to replace the batteries in their smoke detector at least twice a year.
KOAM - Licensed to Pittsburg, Kansas