Two dead, one severely injured in Tift Co. mobile home fire -, South Georgia News, Weather, Sports

Two dead, one severely injured in Tift Co. mobile home fire

November 10, 2007

Tift County -- Melissa Holweger grips a plastic donation jar.

"It hurts. It hurts a lot," she said.

Her boyfriend's father and cousin were killed when the mobile home they were staying in went up in flames.

The three alarm fire began shortly after 2 a.m. Saturday morning in the Pine Manor neighborhood on Bill Bowen Road.

Fire officials say 6 Hispanic men were inside the mobile home when it caught fire. Two were able to escape, another was rescued, one was left badly burned, and sadly, two others never made it out alive.

She said, "I went to the hospital. I went to his uncle's house - to some friends of his. I went everywhere just find out how he was."

Holweger's boyfriend made it out alive, but only after he was rescued from inside the burning home.

"First arriving units encountered heavy flames coming from a mobile home. While our units were in route, information was passed along that there were possibly victims inside the unit. Once the unit arrived, they encountered heavy smoke and fire coming from the mobile home," said Capt. Sam Jackson Jr., Tifton / Tift County Fire Dept.

The fire was so intense, it melted the shutters of an adjacent mobile home. Inside, the aftermath can still be seen. Virtually every inch of the mobile home was untouched by flames.

"At the present time, the fire is still under investigation because the cause of the fire is undetermined at this particular time," said Jackson.

Scattered amongst the melted debris of this mobile home fire, you can see that the flames were so intense, they melted some of the clothing worn by the fire victims. Right now, as investigators try and determine the cause of the fire, neighbors are coming together to raise money to send the bodies back home.

"I'm taking up money for Louis and his family so that they can send the bodies back, so they can get clothes," said Holweger.

A family must now grieve the deaths of two men, while another fights for his life. As the cause is searched for, for now, little help remains sealed in a jar.

The injured victim we're told was air lifted to the Joseph M. Still Burn Center in Augusta where he remains this hour.

The deceased victim's names have been withheld until exact confirmation can be made.

The Tifton / Tift County Fire Department along with local authorities and the State Fire Marshall's Office are investigating the fire.

If you'd like information on how can you make a donation to the family, you can call 229-339-6453.



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