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Friday morning blaze displaces West Jefferson man

Originally published: Dec. 31, 2012
Last modified: Dec. 31, 2012

Jesse Campbell

A West Jefferson man lost his home Friday morning when a fire that originated in the living room destroyed his mobile home. The home was nestled in at the end of a cluster of mobile homes on Radio Road, which overlooks downtown West Jefferson from Highway 194. 
Ashe County Fire Marshal Bob Davis said firefighters from West Jefferson and Jefferson fire departments were dispatched to the scene at 2:07 a.m. and remained on the scene until 5:30 a.m. 
Davis said Edward “Junior” Frye lived in the home at the time of the fire.
Frye was awaken by the sound of a smoke alarm and escaped out of the home's back door, said Davis. He was taken to Ashe Memorial Hospital, said Davis. 
Johnny McCoy, a neighbor with Frye for the past seven years, said he heard from Frye's trailer as the fire raged on. He said the explosion was powerful enough to shake his home and rattle the windows. 
“I got up to get a drink of water about 1:45 a.m. when I saw the smoke,” said McCoy. “A little while after that it exploded.”
Davis said he could not rule out the possibility of an explosion, but did not confirm that it was the cause of the fire. 
Frye required supplemental oxygen treatments for breathing assistance and a melted tank was found nearby, said Davis.  
McCoy said fire fighters remained on the scene until daybreak and claimed that at one point, the flames rivaled a towering pine tree in height. 
“Flames were shooting out of the windows from the upper end of the trailer when I arrived,” added Davis. 
The outer shell is all that remains of the trailer, as the interior of the home appeared charred and gutted. Debris could also be seen in the near vicinity. 
Mobile homes typically burn faster than traditional residences because of the materials the structures consist of, said Davis. 


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